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Budapest 1956. A group of Westerners try to leave the city when Soviet military occupy the country. But the airport is closed down and they have to take a bus to the border. At the border they are stopped by red tape - and Major Surov. The reasons are sketchy, but it seems that the major is romantically interested in one of the westerners, Diana Ashmore. Written by
Soviet troops are shown using U.S. equipment such as M4 Sherman tanks and jeeps. During World War II the Lend-Lease program sent over 4,000 Shermans to the USSR, some 400,000 trucks and jeeps, and many other vehicles, including the M5 half-track (which are seen in photos of the 1956 Soviet takeover of Hungary.) Nearly all of this equipment was still in Soviet use in 1956. See more »
"The Journey" is a romantic version of the cold war. It's about an English woman (Deborah Kerr) trying to smuggle her former love, a Hungarian scientist (Jason Robards, Jr.), out of Hungary during the Hungary Revolt in 1956. She's on board a bus with thirteen other international people who are trying to get out of Hungary through the Austrian border.
Of course, the bus gets stopped by the Russians for a security check. The Russian officer-in-charge (Yul Brynner) becomes attracted to the English woman (Deborah Kerr)and delays the trip. Of course, the Russian officer knows the truth about the Hungarian scientist posing as a British citizen, but he decides not to arrest the scientist because he is waiting for the English woman to come to him. Of course, this all sounds absurd, but it is a fun movie to watch. Despite the romantic flow of dialogue between Mr. Brynner and Ms. Kerr, which seems inappropriate in the situation that they are in, the movie becomes suspenseful and interesting. The good acting overrides some of the silly dialogue. Perhaps, some people involved in the Hungarian Revolt would not appreciate this movie; they would consider it a piece of fluff.
This is my favorite Yul Brynner role. He speaks with his own, masculine voice and is very attractive, especially when he becomes vulnerable. This is Deborah Kerr's second time working with Yul Brynner since they made "The King and I" in 1956. They make a very attractive couple. Too bad they never worked again. This was the second sexy role Ms. Kerr took since "From Here to Eternity". Despite the fact that Ms. Kerr was wearing heavy winter clothes throughout the movie, she was very beautiful and sensual.
The fine supporting cast was headed by Jason Robards, Jr., in his first film role. Some of the international cast were recognizable, like for instance, Robert Morley from England. However, the rest of the actors, I have never seen before or since, were just great in the movie. In the background, it was fun to see Senta Berger, as one of the maids, speak a few lines of Hungarian. A few years later in 1966, she was in a movie, "Cast a Giant Shadow", with Yul Brynner as his leading lady. She is still working today.
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