Le couteau dans la plaie (1962) Poster

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7/10
Decent Sub Hitchcock Fun
seveb-2517910 June 2015
I hadn't bothered watching this before because of the negative reviews it always seems to get, but I love Sophia and she made so few decent movies in the genre's I like to watch, that I finally gave it a go, and I was pleasantly surprised I found this to be a very enjoyable sub Hitchcock vehicle Anthony Perkins is very effective as the wheedling, manipulative man child that is his trademark and Gig Young is effectively ambiguous as the smarmy, stranger, who may turn out be an ally or an enemy The movie teases you with possibilities for violence or revelation that come to nothing, so that when something does happen it is all the more of a surprise (Which is considered slow and old fashioned these days, but was par for the course back then) Black and white suits the ambiance that they producers are aiming for, the veneer of French avant guard for a film that aspires to be more than it is, however what it is, is still fine by me PS; - Those who strangely expected Sophia to take her clothes off at some point obviously don't know her very well, as apart from, and perhaps because of, her experiences in her very early days in the movie business, she never does more than undo a couple of top buttons, as she does here
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6/10
An Unusual Ending For Sophia
theowinthrop21 March 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This is not a great film, but it's enough of a curious film to merit watching. The story deals with a wife who loathes her husband (Anthony Perkins) and thinks him dead. If it is true she is well rid of him. It is not true, and he forces her to go through a life insurance swindle (for a big paying policy on his life). In the course of the movie she meets an insurance investigator (Gig Young) who she would really feel good with. But she has to keep up the lie that Perkins is dead, and Young grows more suspicion. And the pressure of the lie, and meeting Perkins demands, and facing Young's questions is building up more and more on Loren. The conclusion (which I will not reveal) was a surprise for Loren fans, and remains the only time she ever did this in a movie - she goes mad.
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9/10
Tony is great as always
katie kaboom20 December 1999
I just love this movie. It has suspense and a little comedy(even though the film makers may not have intended for there to be). Anthony Perkins was just great as the childish, nightmarish husband of Sophia Loren.

Lisa (played by the ever exasperating Sophia Loren) has tired of her immature, infantile husband, Bob (played by the always great Tony Perkins). Well, when Bob travels to Casablanca via plane and Lisa sees in the newspaper that it crashed with no survivors, she's relieved. But guess what? Unfortunately for her (but fortunately for us Tony fans), Bob didn't die! Well, Bob comes back to Lisa unbeknownst to anyone else and bullies Lisa into collecting the insurance money.

Overall this is just a great film (even if Sophia is in it). The ending is a shocker, too.

One more thing, listen to the film's music; it's really good, too.
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6/10
Life is a masquerade
bkoganbing4 April 2016
Five Miles To Midnight is another of those Alfred Hitchcock type films that could have been a classic had he decided to do them. I think he was busy with The Birds when this came out.

Sophia Loren is the star both in billing and performance. She's married to former American GI Anthony Perkins and it's an abusive relationship. Perkins has to take a flight to Casablanca, but the plane crashes near Bordeaux and miracle of miracles he survives but is not found.

What a golden opportunity for a little insurance fraud. And a battered Sophia goes along with it. The rest of the film is the masquerade that Loren plays as she pretends he's dead like everyone suspects and what she endures with an increasingly unbalanced Perkins.

When Sophia Loren won her Oscar for Two Women she showed her acting chops and this film also has a lot more to do with Sophia the actress than Sophia the sex symbol. As for Anthony Perkins he started out playing callow youths with issues. After Psycho he started out playing far more deranged characters with issues although his character here is descending into a bit of madness unlike Norman Bates who was one fully formed whack job.

Other men in Sophia's life are Gig Young and Jean-Pierre Aumont. Won't give any ending away because in the end we don't know what's to become of the main characters most especially Sophia Loren.
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5/10
One of the most unsatisfying thrillers I've ever seen...
moonspinner554 April 2007
You would think that any thriller beginning with Sophia Loren doing the Twist in a Paris nightclub couldn't be all bad! Unfortunately, the plot mechanisms (and red herrings) of "Five Miles to Midnight" nearly defeat Loren, very good as the put-upon wife of a neurotic who has sneakily walked away from a plane crash, hoping to collect on his flight insurance worth $120,000. Anthony Perkins, more nervous and fey than ever, continually bites his fingernail, his face twitching in possessive jealousy, while we in the audience wait in agony for Loren to come to her senses and put him out of his misery. It's hard to determine which element of the picture is more inappropriate: Perkins' icky Norman Bates-isms, Gig Young's leering, Cheshire Cat-like performance as an ex-detective-turned-newspaper man, or Mikis Theodorakis' insanely 'Parisienne' background music. ** from ****
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Mis-Matched Stars in Low-Budget Thriller
thursdays8 June 2004
Anthony Perkins is not exactly the abusive husband type (especially to an ever-beautiful Sophia Loren). Add to it the plot elements of master-minding an insurance fraud, and the odds of good-natured Perkins pulling it off become immeasurable.

The sole survivor of a plane crash, Perkins was fortunate to have taken out a special insurance policy (even if the odds of dying in a crash were 1 in 1,000,000). Good wife Loren, already prepared for widowhood by the "news", gets a good shock when Perkins shows up, pressuring Loren to play along with the hoax to collect the insurance money.

Although the ending is somewhat of a surprise, the time spent getting there seems like an endless and tiresome walk through the woods, only to arrive at a run down greasy spoon as a reward. Without any frills or glamour, even shot in b&w, this is a less than average vehicle for either of the stars. Look for a young Tommy Norden (of TV's "Flipper" Fame) in a minor role. Otherwise, skip it altogether!**
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5/10
Not quite campy, not exactly thrilling, but...
JasparLamarCrabb8 April 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Anthony Perkins and Sophia Loren star so you know the Paris-set FIVE MILES TO MIDNIGHT is not going to be a run-of-the mill melodrama. It's the crazy story of Perkins faking his own death and convincing needy Loren to go along with the plan. He doesn't let the fact that she despises him deter him in the least. Director Anatole Litvak hits the ground running wasting no time in setting up this ridiculous situation. Perkins and Loren, whom the script even admits are oddly matched, are excellent. Perkins' first appearance is typical...biting his nails as he nearly stalks Loren (his wife!) in a crowded nightclub. Loren is beautiful and affirms her acting talent. She's a complete bundle of nerves. Gig Young appears late in the film as an American reporter with an eye on Loren and a suspicion as to what is really going on. Very moody, sometimes skirting camp, the film captures a terrific slice of early '60s Paris thanks to some stunning B&W photography by Henri Alekan.
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3/10
Doesn't work as a feature film
Wizard-823 April 2009
The first thing that will strike viewers as strange is the title. Is "Five Miles To Midnight" a common expression? If so, I've never heard of it before. Anyway, placed next to the movie, it doesn't make that much sense, even though a character in the movie does say the title out loud at one point. If they had used the Charles Bronson title "10 To Midnight", it would have made a bit more sense.

The second thing that will be strange to viewers is the pairing of Anthony Perkins and Sophia Loren. True, they were paired together as a romantic couple a few years earlier in "Desire Under The Elms", but reportedly that worked as well as it does here. How a beauty in the form of Loren could be attracted to the nervous, boyish Perkins is hard to swallow, to say the least.

But even if the title was fixed AND they got two lead actors with better (and believable) chemistry together, I think the movie still wouldn't have worked. I could see this story being told as a short graphic story in the comic "Tales From The Crypt". I could see this story working as a half-hour episode (with commercials) of a show like "Alfred Hitchcock Presents". Or even as a full hour. But this telling of the story lasts about 110 minutes. It's VERY slow-moving, full of padding like the stuff with the little nosy boy. Plus, the ending of the movie is very predictable - I guessed what would happen after reading the plot synopsis before actually starting the movie.

Far from the worst movie I've seen, but still not worth seeing. Trust me, you've seen this story before one way or another.
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5/10
I'm Not Leaving on a Jet Plane
BaronBl00d25 June 2008
Rather pedestrian, generally slow, and, as others have succinctly noted, very miscast "thriller" about a husband surviving a plane crash and forcing his estranged, unhappy wife into acting like he is dead in order to cash in the huge insurance settlement. Tony Perkins plays the mean, horrible husband - and there are times when his boyish looks and behaviours actually come off as somewhat convincing but more often as not he just seems not up to the part. Sophia Loren - wildly miscast as the downtrodden wife and the wife of this guy to boot. She opens the film doing what has to be the best version of the Twist I have ever seen(she is lovely, absolutely lovely!). But Loren is given really very little to do and she looks so disinterested throughout most of the film until she has some climatic scenes at the end and overacts. There is little thriller here at all - mostly Loren looking unhappy and Perkins smiling and trying to be shocking. Huhhhhh! Sorry I was stifling a yawn. Gig Young, again miscast, plays some former police detective leering at Loren throughout and getting in so to speak to the Italian Zone in Paris. The Parisian backdrops and even the French-themed music are rather nice but I saw the ending coming well before the five mile marker and way before midnight.
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6/10
Not exactly the thriller it aims to be
cdunbar-331 August 2008
The evocative opening scene of Five Miles Before Midnight held promise. I anticipated a moody piece of film noir with an intriguing female lead rather than the usual male. I was also hoping for more of Jean Pierre Aumont, who distinguishes any film he's in, but his role was little more than a cameo. However Sophia Loren, though lovely to look at, does not yet have the dramatic punch to carry off this role, or perhaps she only required better direction. There was ambiguity suggested about how faithful she was to husband Tony Perkins and this could have been put over nicely with a more well seasoned performance. Perhaps it was simply their pairing together--I didn't think they possessed any chemistry. It's hard to believe she ever found anything attractive about Perkins well established immaturity. What woman would? In any case, she doesn't breathe enough life into her character of put-upon housewife and near the film's conclusion, she goes overboard in a frankly unbelievable personality transformation. Also, the "surprise" ending was no surprise to this reviewer, who wonders why she didn't see the obvious way out of her troubles much earlier. It is however, an entirely watchable film and one of those that you kind of like to poke fun at. Certainly there are worse films out there!
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7/10
1950's Insurance fraud with Sophia Loren as lovely as ever.
Victor Jordan22 October 2017
Suspense begins from the beginning with Italian wife Lisa Macklin (Sophia Loren) on the verge of splitting with her American husband Robert Macklin (Anthony Perkins). Prior to boarding a plane Lisa tells Robert she will not be here when he gets back. Before boarding Robert purchases an insurance policy for $120,000. The plane crashes and the papers report that there were no survivors.

The suspense really heats up when after the funeral Robert appears back at their apartment injured but very much alive. He brings Lisa into a scheme to keep his death a secret so that they can collect the money. Lisa is reluctant but Robert promises to allow for their separation and a share of the money if she would assist with the plane. Lisa is very torn and emotional as she labors through the process. The movie keeps you guessing what the outcome will be, and Lisa eventually realizes that she must end her trauma.

Sophia Loren is lovely and her facial expressions expressed her fear and emotional she experiences. Anthony Perkins is exceptional in being the creepy loner type. David Barnes and Tommy Norden provide great supporting roles as well.
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6/10
Many Miles of Monotony
ags12327 August 2016
"Five Miles To Midnight" is a thriller with very few thrills. It does, however, offer some redeeming qualities which make it worthwhile for select viewers. Unlike many of the reviews posted here, I don't think the film is miscast. Anthony Perkins may not fit the description of a physical brute, but his persistent neediness is just as controlling and abusive. Creating such an unlikeable character is a complete reversal of Norman Bates, who was so endearing you almost wanted him to get away with murder. Sophia Loren not only looks beautiful, but turns in a fine, convincing performance. Remember, English is not her first language, yet her phrasing and tone are utterly real, as are her reactions. No surprise that she was awarded a Best Actress Oscar two years previously. The Paris we see here is not a postcard view, but rather a seedier image captured in stark black and white photography. The fault with this film is the script, which is lazy and weak and squanders an intriguing premise. "Five Miles To Midnight" is still worth a look.
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2/10
Raising Norman Bates
macpet49-14 November 2008
This is a miscasting masterpiece. Tony Perkins is still the perpetual troubled youth with the reed-like body. First, he is never believable as a married straight man, even in a good film. He is at his best playing neurotic boy men who cannot find their way. Here he is up against the sensual earth mother, Sophia Loren, of all people. Sophia does her best to raise Tony to her level but all for naught. He tries to mentally abuse Sophia and physically gets in a few jabs, slaps mostly. Sophia is much larger than Tony so it all comes off as absurd. She could take him with one punch. Don't tell me a savvy Italian woman like herself didn't shove around a few over zealous American soldiers during the war. She can take care of herself. Tony is only terrifying when he has a weapon and in this one he's weaponless. It's just too dull for words. He looks like he needs to be put to bed with a story and glass of milk. Thank God they didn't waste any technicolor on this one.
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7/10
The Master of Tics
Hitchcoc19 October 2017
Tony Perkins, fresh off of "Psycho," isn't Norman Bates, but he's damned close. His eccentric, childish persona really made me nervous. I forgot what a looker Sophia Loren was. I remember her later when she had put on so much weight. Anyway, she has to deal with Perkins and his idiotic moods. He's violent and a bully, so she is stuck. Imagine the relief when she thinks he is dead. But then he shows up and ruins her life. Gig Young comes to investigate and she must carry with her all these secrets of bilking the insurance company. It's a really uncomfortable film to watch. Perkins is way too much here and that kind of ruins it for me. But there is some morality at work here.
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6/10
Low-budget thriller -- Loren/Perkins both miscast in leads
mdm-111 June 2005
Anthony Perkins is not exactly the abusive husband type (especially to an ever-beautiful Sophia Loren). Add to it the plot elements of master-minding an insurance fraud, and the odds of good-natured Perkins pulling it off become immeasurable. The sole survivor of a plane crash, Perkins was fortunate to have taken out a special insurance policy (even if the odds of dying in a crash were 1 in 1,000,000). Good wife Loren, already prepared for widowhood by the "news", gets a good shock when Perkins shows up, pressuring Loren to play along with the hoax to collect the insurance money.

Although the ending is somewhat of a surprise, the time spent getting there seems like an endless and tiresome walk through the woods, only to arrive at a run down greasy spoon as a reward. Without any frills or glamour, even shot in b&w, this is a less than average vehicle for either of the stars. Look for a young Tommy Norden (of TV's "Flipper" Fame) in a minor role. Otherwise, skip it altogether
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7/10
Midnight Mourn
sol25 August 2010
Warning: Spoilers
***SPOILERS*** Transplanted former US airman Robert Macklin, Anthony Perkins, and his sexy Italian wife Lisa, Sophia Loren, have been having their material problems in the city of lights Paris France with Robert suspecting his wife of cheating on him. It's not that Robert's suspicions are unfounded in that Lisa has been having an affair with American newspaper reporter Alan Stewart, Jean-Pierrie Aumont, whom she plans to take off with after a divorce from a very reluctant Robert. Robert knows what he's got, ultra sexy film star Sophia Loren, and isn't that willing to give her up without a fight!

It's then that two things happen in the film that changes it's entire completion or storyline. Alan is transfered back to New York City and Robert is killed in a plane crash on his way to Casablanca for a job interview! Or so it seems!

As things turn out Alan is replaced by his newspaper by David Barnes, Gig Young, who's even more hotter for Lisa then even Alan or her late husband Robert is. As for Robert he somehow survived the plane crash, by landing on his head, when he was flung from the aircraft before it hit the ground! Coming back home to as shocked Lisa, who felt that she finally was rid of him, Robert forces her to file a life insurance claim for $120,000.00 that Robert made out for himself before he boarded the doomed plane.

Despite having all the cards in her favor, all she had to do is go the the insurance company and tell them that her dead husband was in fact alive, Lisa does as Robert asks her to do thus making herself an accomplice in Robert's issuance fraud scheme! As for the dying to jump into the sack with Lisa David Barnes he in his sniffing out her apartment, as well as Lisa herself, comes to the realization that Robert is in fact alive and plans to use that information to get Lisa to go on a date with him just to start the ball, in finally getting her to say "I Do", rolling!

***SPOILERS**** You would have expected more form a movie with top stars like Sophia Loren Anthony Perkins and Gig Young in it but it comes across like a run of the mill made for TV cheesy forbidden romance revenge flick! You would have at least expected at one time in the movie, just to keep from from nodding off, to see Lisa or Miss Loren take her clothes off and show off her impressive vital statistics, 38-24-37, but she's fully clothes during he entire lengths of the film! All we have left is Lisa trying to somehow get Robert off her back in committing a crime far worse, that can end up getting her shot at sunrise, then the insurance fraud that he was blackmailing her into doing!

As for the love sick David Barnes he blows his big chance in getting it on with Lisa by not only finding out her criminal involvement with Robert but having her give herself up to the Paris Police for it! Where in the future the only way David can see her, if in fact she want's to see him, is behind bars on visiting day in prison!
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6/10
Not a very good vehicle for anyone
blanche-227 September 2008
Certainly Anatole Litvak was no slouch as a director, but he missed the mark here in "Five Miles to Midnight," a 1962 film starring Sophia Loren, Tony Perkins and Gig Young.

Lisa Macklin (Sophia Loren) married to an American, believes that her husband (Tony Perkins) has been killed in an airplane crash. Actually, he was a survivor and wants to collect $120,000 in insurance he took out before the flight by pretending to be dead. Of course, his wife has to collect it. The two don't exactly get along, and the only way to be rid of him is for Lisa to collect the money for him. She is falling for a newspaperman (Young), who is suspicious as to what is going on. Her husband promises he will let her go once he has the money.

This is a very unsatisfactory film, in part because of the miscasting of Tony Perkins as Loren's husband. Not only that, but the acting just isn't very good even from pros like Loren, Perkins and Young. Litvak only made two more films after this - it appears he lost his touch after making some marvelous films: This Above All, All This and Heaven Too, Tovarich, City for Conquest. Either that or he had to make too many concessions. At any rate, he didn't pay too much attention to what the actors were doing. The story just meanders along. Not very good.
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5/10
Badly miscast suspense/thriller with implausible plot...
Neil Doyle5 April 2011
FIVE MILES TO MIDNIGHT is a disappointment in way of casting and direction. Anatole Litvak tries to give the improbable twists of the story some conviction but neither SOPHIA LOREN nor ANTHONY PERKINS are up to the job. Furthermore, the plot has the woman making such foolish decisions that it's hard to take the plot seriously.

Loren gets all the loving close-ups her fans would want while going through some agonizing predicaments but never does her acting seem like more than acting. Perkins gets to slap her around and come up with some wise-cracking insults when he discovers she's been unfaithful to him, but it too seems too much like acting because he's simply miscast as a brute.

Even the usually reliable GIG YOUNG looks as though he decided to phone this one in, so unconvincing is his role. The telegraphed ending fails to convince and seems more like a contrivance of the script writer than a logical outcome to the story, even though Loren tries hard to show her anguished mental state.

All of it has the look of a low-budget film hastily put together without any distinctive touches. It would probably work better as a half-hour teleplay, the kind that TV frequently produced during the '60s.
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7/10
One of the campiest movies I've ever seen.
philiponel13 November 2000
Very campy movie. The 60's dancing style is so outdated. Sophia Loren, of course very beautiful, has not done much to perfect her acting style this early in her career. She seems to have great trouble with the English language. The character starts out as a really nice girl, then in the middle of the movie, she turns!! Quite a surprise. Tony Perkins is wonderful as this slimy mean nasty insurance salesman. Gig Young is absolutely horrible. I don't know who ever told him he could act. It has been years since I've seen anything this campy. Very entertaining.
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7/10
***
edwagreen19 November 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Anthony Perkins does an effective almost like continuation of the Norman Bates character in this 1962 film. Sophia Loren is equally effective doing a Norma Desmond crack-up like character in the film as well.

Misdeed comes to the unhappily married couple when the plane Perkins is flying on crashes and he is thrown from the plane and survives. No one has to notice that so he literally returns from the dead and plots with Loren to get the insurance money. He promises her her freedom from him, only to go back on his word when she finally gets the money by saying that after all she lied and signed papers to get the money.

Gig Young is the reporter she meets earlier after he takes over the apartment of Jean Pierre Aumont who is fortunate enough to exit this film quite early.

Everyone is dancing about twisting in the era of the twist and there is that obnoxious little boy, a neighbor from quite the way, who sees Perkins and tries to be his friend.
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6/10
What a weird one this is
marcslope10 November 2015
A prestigious director, two celebrated screenwriters, a trendy early-'60s production design, and Sophia Loren and Anthony Perkins, and this ludicrous crime drama just adds up to misguided. Others have pointed to Perkins' miscasting, but who could have persuasively played this despicable rotter, who goes from beastly to charming and back again in a snap, sometimes in the same line? He's an abusive husband who fights with wife Sophia, heads off to Casablanca for a business trip, the plane crashes and he's presumed dead, but he returns, and schemes to collect a large insurance policy he took out at the airport. (This couple, with their designer fashions and her fabulous sports car, don't look to be hurting for money.) Eventually the insurance-fraud plot turns to murder, and Sophia's forced to turn to smarmy Gig Young, at the tail end of his leading-man days, for advice and consolation. And there it just ends, when the plot hasn't been resolved at all and we're not even sure whether we're on her side or not. Sophia does not look happy to be there, but she's at least focused and consistent, which is more than can be said for Perkins, and there's a notably good supporting turn by child actor Tommy Norden, as a snoopy neighbor who threatens to undo the larceny. It all feels quite modern and with-it for 1962, with moody black-and-white photography and jazzy score, and it ain't dull. But it sure ain't good.
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1/10
Torture to watch
filmalamosa26 May 2012
Warning: Spoilers
Anthony Perkins and Sophia Loren Paris 1962....insurance fraud thriller... sounds good? WRONG.

Anthony Perkins was ruined by Psycho...after his success there he seems to be used for only one role:a weird creepy out of control character--certainly the case in this movie.

The story is so unlikely and Perkins so unlikeable both factors make this movie a dud. What can I say it is poorly written not suspenseful. It has lots of very boring or irritating plot mechanisms and red herrings that fall flat. Mostly I think though that it is Perkin's chemistry that wrecks it.

Sophia Loren 28 being chased by 55 year old male heroes somehow is just irritating too....I was so glad when Loren murdered Perkins. Both the hero and antihero are repulsive in this thing.

God this thing was awful...

DO NOT RECOMMEND--you will regret watching it.
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