Jacques Cournot, a freelance skipper, is hired by Mr Hendrix in Santo Domingo, first of all to advise him regarding the acquisition of a sailing boat. After a thorough inspection of a ... See full summary »
A French secret agent gets a license to kill when he is sent to Vienna to plug a security leak in this routine spy saga. He is caught in the crossfire of international enemy agents trying to eliminate the French.
Secret documents and a lump of experimental alloy have been stolen from the French government, and special agent Coplan (Henri Vidal) is dispatched to Zurich to recover them at all costs. If I mention that Coplan's contact in Zurich happens to be a gorgeous blonde (Barbara Laage) and that the woman he has to seduce to complete his mission is a ravishing brunette (Nicole Maurey) you'll understand that we're in Bond territory here - though in this case without the budget, the exotic locations or the talent.
Vidal was a matinée idol in his day, but his smarmy, wisecracking, ladykiller persona looks as dated as the blazer and cravat he wears through much of the film. You won't believe in the reality of this character for a moment, and the whimsical seduction scenes will make you want to throw a chair at him. The villains too (with one exception) are a bland bunch of stereotypes, barely more animated than the cheap-looking studio sets and the uninspired locations (please, not another shoot-out in a dockside warehouse!).
That exception I mentioned is Lino Ventura, who plays one of his most vicious screen characters here. The scene where he attempts to murder Barbara Laage is probably the highlight of the movie. Sadly he only gets about 10 minutes of screen time; it's a good performance, but to market this as a Ventura film, as the French DVD publisher is doing, is pushing it a bit.
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