7.8/10
3,260
38 user 33 critic

5 Fingers (1952)

Approved | | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller | 5 May 1952 (UK)
During WWII the valet to the British Ambassador to Ankara sells British secrets to the Germans while trying to romance a refugee Polish countess.

Writers:

(screenplay), (book)
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Colin Travers
...
Sir Frederic Taylor
...
L. C. Moyzisch
Herbert Berghof ...
Col. von Richter
...
...
Siebert (as A. Ben Astar)
Roger Plowden ...
Keith Macfadden

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Storyline

Based on a true story. In neutral Turkey during WWII, the ambitious and extremely efficient valet for the British ambassador tires of being a servant and forms a plan to promote himself to rich gentleman of leisure. His employer has many secret documents; he will photograph them, and with the help of a refugee Countess, sell them to the Nazis. When he makes a certain amount of money, he will retire to South America with the Countess as his wife. Written by Ken Yousten <kyousten@bev.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The story of the highest-paid spy in history! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

5 May 1952 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Operation Cicero  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Henry Hathaway was first considered to direct. Micheline Presle and Alida Valli were approached for the role of Countess Staviska. See more »

Goofs

Foam in the Countess' beer while she talks with Count von Papen. See more »

Quotes

Countess Anna Staviska: Unfortunately, I have a dinner engagement. But he's an undersecretary and used to waiting.
Ulysses Diello: Any particular undersecretary, madam?
Countess Anna Staviska: Undersecretaries are never particular. Perhaps that's why they take me to dinner.
Ulysses Diello: It's far more likely that in madam's presence they feel like ambassadors.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Before the movie title: This is a true story. All the exterior scenes in this picture were filmed in the locales associated with the story. See more »

Connections

Version of The 20th Century-Fox Hour: Operation Cicero (1956) See more »

Soundtracks

Ride of the Valkyries
(uncredited)
Composed by Richard Wagner
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User Reviews

 
Superb
23 January 2011 | by (Claremont,USA) – See all my reviews

Supposedly based on a true story, a valet uses his position at British embassy to steal WWII secrets to sell to the Germans.

What a superbly tight script that stays on the compelling track the whole time. We watch lowly valet Diello (Mason) use nothing but wits and guts to outmaneuver both the British and the Germans. He's not a sympathetic lead character, always unusual for a Hollywood production (TCF). But you can't help admiring his ability to outwit the professionals, even if he is completely self-centered.

I get the feeling Diello sees himself as a natural born aristocrat denied that position by the fortunes of birth. So, by golly, he's going to use those talents to get the wealth and position he deserves, but which European society has denied him.

Mason is simply superb in a tailor-made part. He projects both the icy intelligence and curt politeness that the role requires. I sweated a bucket load when the cleaning lady rummages around the closet, while Diello photographs embassy secrets. If she finds the power switch, he's toast. Great scene.

Note too, how there're no obvious good guys-bad guys, also unusual for a WWII drama. The British are slightly favored, but at least the Germans aren't caricatured. It's more like one opportunist (Diello) is exploiting both sides impartially, and they're both after him.

Then too, what guy wouldn't lose his head over the delectable Darrieux, even a guy as calculating as Diello. All of which makes the ending one of the most ironically satisfying in movie annals. I'm betting this was one of the best films to come out of that spare movie year of 1952. So if you haven't seen it, do.


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