MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 1,384 this week

The Quiet American (1958)

6.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.8/10 from 931 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 13 critic

A young naive American and a cynical older British diplomat disagree over politics in 1952 Vietnam and over a beautiful young native girl.

0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

Editors' Spotlight

Emmy Awards 2014

We have the winners, photos and more in our 2014 Emmys section.


Related News

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 46 titles
created 02 Jun 2011
 
a list of 25 titles
created 18 Jun 2011
 
a list of 45 titles
created 23 Apr 2013
 
a list of 22 titles
created 14 May 2013
 
list image
a list of 76 titles
created 3 months ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Quiet American (1958)

The Quiet American (1958) on IMDb 6.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Quiet American.

User Polls

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Honey Pot (1967)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Inspired by a performance of his favorite play, "Volpone," 20th-century millionaire Cecil Fox devises an intricate plan to trick three of his former mistresses into believing he is dying. ... See full summary »

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Rex Harrison, Susan Hayward, Cliff Robertson
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Dr. Noah Praetorius falls in love with Debra, a student who finds out that she is pregnant by her old boyfriend.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Cary Grant, Jeanne Crain, Finlay Currie
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

George Taylor returns from WWII with amnesia. Back home in Los Angeles, while trying to track down his old identity, he stumbles onto a 3-year old murder case and a hunt for a missing $2 million.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: John Hodiak, Nancy Guild, Lloyd Nolan
No Way Out (1950)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A black doctor is assigned to treat two racist White, robbery suspects who are brothers, and when one dies, it causes tension that could start a race riot.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Richard Widmark, Linda Darnell, Stephen McNally
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Railroad surveyer Murphy goes after rustlers who murdered his father and brother. Along the way, he first arrests then teams up with outlaw Duryea who helps Murphy only to see how long the ... See full summary »

Director: Jesse Hibbs
Stars: Audie Murphy, Susan Cabot, Dan Duryea
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A letter is addressed to three wives from their "best friend" Addie Ross, announcing that she is running away with one of their husbands: but she does not say which one.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Jeanne Crain, Linda Darnell, Ann Sothern
Action | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A charming but totally ruthless criminal is sent to a remote Arizona prison. He enlists the help of his cellmates in an escape attempt with the promise of sharing his hidden loot.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Henry Fonda, Hume Cronyn
Destry (1954)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In the old West, a small frontier town is being controlled by ruthless mob boss Decker and his cronies. After the local sheriff dies under mysterious circumstances, Decker arranges to have ... See full summary »

Director: George Marshall
Stars: Audie Murphy, Mari Blanchard, Lyle Bettger
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

When whites hunger after the gold on Ute Indian land, a bigoted young man finds himself forced into a peacekeeping role.

Director: Nathan Juran
Stars: Audie Murphy, Walter Brennan, Lyle Bettger
War | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Murphy deserts the Union Army to warn former Texas neighbors of impending Indian attacks triggered by Army massacre. He overcomes initial distrust and convinces the homesteaders (all women ... See full summary »

Director: George Marshall
Stars: Audie Murphy, Kathryn Grant, Hope Emerson
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Billy the Kid becomes embroiled in Lincoln County, NM, land wars. When rancher who gave him a break is killed by rival henchman, Billy vows revenge. New employer takes advantage of his ... See full summary »

Director: Kurt Neumann
Stars: Audie Murphy, Gale Storm, Albert Dekker
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A scrappy fighter from Jersey City named Tommy Shea -- "born in a dump, educated in an alley" -- catches the eye of wealthy businessman, Robert Mallinson, who allows him to train at his ... See full summary »

Director: Jesse Hibbs
Stars: Audie Murphy, Barbara Rush, Jeff Morrow
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Claude Dauphin ...
...
...
Fred Sadoff ...
Dominguez
Kerima ...
Richard Loo ...
Peter Trent ...
Eliot Wilkins
Georges Bréhat ...
French Colonel (as Georges Brehat)
Clinton Anderson ...
Joe Morton
Yôko Tani ...
Rendezvous Hostess
Nguyen Long ...
Boy with Mask
C. Long Cuong ...
Boy in Watchtower
Tu An ...
Boy in Watchtower
Edit

Storyline

In this adaptation of Graham Greene's prophetic novel about U.S. foreign policy failure in pre-war Indochina, Audie Murphy plays an innocent Young American opposite the older, cynical Brit Michael Redgrave. They play out their widely different views on the prospects struggle for the hearts and minds of the Vietnamese people in their competition over a young woman. Murphy wants to reform her and make her a typical middle class American housewife; Redgrave accepts her inability to formulate or retain a political ideal and while promising her no real future, he objects to Murphy's attempts to change her. It's not clear whether Murphy is just what he appears - a bungling Yankee do-gooder - or a deliberate agent of U.S. covert operations. Written by Rita Richardson <RRichar790@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Thriller | War

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

8 February 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Vier Pfeifen Opium  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TCM Print)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In Europe, director-writer Joseph L. Mankiewicz was savagely attacked for his film's infidelity to the source novel by Graham Greene, not least by Greene himself. The screenplay essentially turns the novel inside-out, so that the blundering "quiet American", whose extreme naiveté causes tragedy and his own death despite his having only the best of intentions, is transformed into a shrewd and heroic figure, far wiser and more honorable than his British rival. Mankiewicz later referred to the film as "very bad" (although he also liked to point out that Jean-Luc Godard had called it the best film of its year) and claimed that he had not been able to concentrate on the film because of the mental collapse of his wife, Rose Stradner, who committed suicide soon after he had finished it. See more »

Quotes

Thomas Fowler: [to the American] You should never trust anyone when there's a woman in the case.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Simpsons: Smart & Smarter (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

La Cathédrale engloutie
(uncredited)
Composed by Claude Debussy
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The novel is sometimes hailed as Graham Greene's best, and this film version is suitably impressive too.
3 November 2003 | by (Todmorden, England) – See all my reviews

The Quiet American has a lot to live up to, because it is adapted from possibly the best book that Graham Greene ever wrote. However, it is a very well made and literate film which manages to make a reasonable stab at living up to the forbidding reputation of its source material.

Audie Murphy gives a career-best performance as the title character, an American living in Vietnam during the French incursion into the country. He believes that he can make a difference by providing funding for arms, but his political and economic beliefs often lead to death and destruction. A British journalist named Fowler (Michael Redgrave) befriends him, but soon their friendship is damaged when the young American has an affair with Fowler's Vietnamese mistress. In the end, Fowler ponders whether to betray the American to his enemies as an act of revenge for what the American has done to his love-life.

The film is powerful, absorbing and well-acted. It perhaps could be criticised for the extraordinarily high amount of dialogue (it's one of those films where if you stop listening for 30 seconds, you'll lose the plot) but that is probably the only true weakness. The themes of betrayal, colonialism, and the wisdom of interfering in the affairs of other nations, are handled thought-provokingly, and the moral dilemma facing the characters at the end are emotionally shattering. Redgrave gives a great performance, conveying the pain of his dilemma with aching conviction.


27 of 32 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Original Reviews dnick_p301
Vigot dislikes 'happy end' ? dkiltz
Check this out. major_mc_cloud
An American director's censorship equinoxxx
Sanitisation of Fowler? Charlot47
Casting disasters: Phuong? Charlot47
Discuss The Quiet American (1958) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?