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The Man Who Never Was (1956)

 -  War | Drama  -  9 May 1956 (France)
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 2,630 users  
Reviews: 54 user | 8 critic

True story of a British attempt to trick the enemy into weakening Sicily's defenses before the 1943 attack, using a dead man with faked papers.

Director:

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(book) (as The Hon. Ewen Montagu C.B.E. D.L. Q.C.) , (screenplay)
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Title: The Man Who Never Was (1956)

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Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Lt. Cmdr. Ewen Montagu
...
Lucy Sherwood
Robert Flemyng ...
Lt. George Acres
Josephine Griffin ...
Pam
...
Patrick O'Reilly
Laurence Naismith ...
Adm. Cross
Geoffrey Keen ...
Gen. Nye
Moultrie Kelsall ...
The Father
...
Taxi Driver
...
...
Gen. Coburn
Allan Cuthbertson ...
Vice-Admiral
Joan Hickson ...
Landlady
Terence Longdon ...
Larry (as Terence Longden)
Gibb McLaughlin ...
Club Porter
Edit

Storyline

British Intelligence during World War II is trying to get the German High Command to shift it's forces away from Italy prior to the invasion. To create the illusion of a plan for England to invade Greece a dead body is to be procured, allowed to be found with secret papers on him by Spanish authorities who will send the papers on to the Germans, or that's the plan. First they have to find a body that will look drowned, and create an identity for him that will pass the examination of the German agent who is sure to check him out. Based on a true story. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The most fiendish plot ever conceived! The most amazing "human being" ever created! The most diabolical phantom-- See more »

Genres:

War | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

9 May 1956 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Der Mann, den es nie gab  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System) (magnetic prints)| (optical prints)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Average Shot Length = ~15.7 seconds. Median Shot Length = ~14.4 seconds. See more »

Goofs

When the Spanish fisherman finds the dead body on the beach it is supposed to be early in the morning. However, the sun is low in the sky over the water (i.e. in the west), indicating it's really in the late afternoon. See more »

Quotes

Lieutenant Commander Ewen Montagu: Suppose I wanted to put a dead body in the sea, and let it float ashore, and have it accepted by the people who find it as the victim of an air crash at sea. What sort of body would I need?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Military security and respect for a solemn promise have made it necessary to disguise the identity of some of the characters in this film; but in all other essentials this is the true story of "Major William Martin" See more »

Connections

Featured in Operation Mincemeat (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Bless 'em All
(uncredited)
Written by Fred Godfrey (1917)
Revised lyrics by Jimmy Hughes and Frank Lake (1940)
Additional lyrics by Al Stillman (1941)
Sung by the patrons of pub
See more »

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User Reviews

Interesting spy drama
20 November 2000 | by (Eatontown, NJ, USA) – See all my reviews

Based on "Operation Mincemeat" during World War II, this film is an excellent example of a spy movie that is interesting without being gimmicky or melodramatic. An excellent cast is headed by the redoubtable Clifton Webb.

The elaborate plot to trick Nazis by using a corpse masquerading as a dead Royal Marine officer is amazing in its detail. The film is all the more astonishing because it is based on the actual ruse to deceive the enemy into thinking that the invasion of Italy would take place in a location other than where it actually happened. A good film for espionage lovers.


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