During the Korean War, Italian nurse Virna Lisi falls in love with two American fliers, Tony Curtis and George C. Scott. Lisi marries Curtis after he convinces her that Scott has been ... See full summary »
A district attorney investigates the racially charged case of three teenagers accused of the murder of a blind Puerto Rican boy. He begins to discover that the facts in the case aren't ... See full summary »
Sgt. Mike Kincaid of the French Foreign Legion learns, from a Riff prisoner, that an attack will soon be made by the villainous Hussin on the Legion's outpost of Tarfa. Kincaid volunteers ... See full summary »
The son of a dead Italian nobleman and a wealthy American woman forgets the disappointment of finding he has no talent for being a painter by succumbing to the sexual advances of an amoral model who believes in indiscriminate love affairs.
Messenger asks a friend to check into a list of names before leaving on a trip. When his plane is blown out of the sky, the matter becomes more serious. As his friend checks into the list, each seems to have died in mysterious circumstances. As he goes down the list, the deaths become more recent and a race to find the remaining survivors and what put each of them on this list ensues. Written by
John Vogel <email@example.com>
Was partially filmed on John Huston's own estate in Ireland. See more »
The closer shots during the fox-hunting scenes were shot in a studio using rear projection. In these shots, wires can be seen holding the actors and allowing them to move up and down as though riding real horses. See more »
There's nary a conspiracy. And if I'm right about this, it's a far older sin than politics.
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The characters played by Burt Lancaster, Frank Sinatra and Tony Curtis in the film are never identified by name. See more »
Gimmicky star-chasing all but sinks modest murder mystery
The handful of top-notch films directed by John Huston, from The Maltese Falcon in 1941 to Prizzi's Honor in 1986, has always been evened out by more than his share of clunkers -- mediocre material half-heartedly helmed (The Bible, In This Our Life, Judge Roy Bean, Annie). But what was his thinking behind The List of Adrian Messenger? A modestly entertaining murder mystery of the fusty old English school, it's trumped up with foolish gimmickry that's irrelevant to the movie but was vital to its marketing. A starry cast -- Kirk Douglas, Burt Lancaster, Robert Mitchum, Tony Curtis, Frank Sinatra -- wanders around under false-faces for, with one exception, no discernible reason (they all end up looking like late Sean Connery). So sitting through it is to join the celebrity hunt (preferable, at any rate, to the fox hunts which eat up the film footage).
The plot proper concerns a series of fatal "accidents" that leads George C. Scott, sans mask and makeup, to uncover a betrayal in wartime Burma and the scion of an aristocratic family long vanished into the Canadian west. But Huston loses interest in the puzzle with unseemly haste -- as do we. Stifling yawns, we wait for the "stars" -- most of whom contribute little more than walk-ons -- to peel off their disguises, winking and smirking insufferably at the camera.
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