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A fine film with Robert Newton acting well in an ensemble for once. He is a signalman at Newhaven docks where trains were loaded onto ferries to cross the Channel to Dieppe (hence the title of Simenon's original novel) who sees a man pushed into the harbour and rescues not the man but a suitcase holding £5000. He is about to phone the police when the Stationmaster reprimands him for not operating a signal on time and so, step-by-step, he considers keeping the money and his downfall begins. Newton is very good as a man tempted by wealth beyond his dreams- and the limits of his dreams are well-depicted too- but all of the actors are good: Margaret Barton as the daughter having to take on an adult's responsibility, William Hartnell makes the thief and killer a decent man, concerned for his family, Simone Simon as a "radio-active mermaid" in a funfair magic act still has a few illusions left to be stirred by the money. The supporting cast are all convincing- caricatures, sometimes, but never absurd. It's well-directed with some excellent touches and deftly-handled camera-work, giving the atmosphere of a small town on the edge of the world. The only fault is the sometimes over-emphatic music.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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