MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 15,150 this week

Ring of Treason (1964)
"Ring of Spies" (original title)

 -  Drama  -  28 May 1964 (USA)
7.4
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.4/10 from 30 users  
Reviews: 2 user

The film is based on the actual events of the Portland Spy Ring trial in the U.K. A disgruntled Navy Clerk is transferred to a secret research establishment and is subsequently black-mailed... See full summary »

Director:

0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 247 titles
created 05 May 2011
 
a list of 376 titles
created 9 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Ring of Treason" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Ring of Treason (1964)

Ring of Treason (1964) on IMDb 7.4/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Ring of Treason.
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Mayerling (1968)
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Based on real life events that led to tragic deaths of Crown Prince Rudolf of Austria and his lover Baroness Mary Vetsera.

Director: Terence Young
Stars: Omar Sharif, Catherine Deneuve, James Mason
The Extra Day (1956)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The final scene of a film has been lost and the extras have to be rounded up for it to be re-shot.

Director: William Fairchild
Stars: Richard Basehart, Simone Simon, George Baker
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

A young man visiting a house that turns out to be haunted is terrorized by the ghost of a man who had been murdered there years before.

Director: Oswald Mitchell
Stars: Laurence Harvey, Lesley Brook, John Stuart
Pack of Lies (TV Movie 1987)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

How well do you know your neighbors, your close friends? What if the FBI asked you if they could use your home to spy on them... See full synopsis »

Director: Anthony Page
Stars: Ellen Burstyn, Teri Garr, Sammi Davis
Adventure | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Two cartoonists meet a playboy who lives out the fantasies created in their cartoons. He hires them to create a new comic strip. As they work on the new strip, the playboy begins to live it... See full summary »

Director: Alain Jessua
Stars: Jean-Pierre Cassel, Claudine Auger, Michel Duchaussoy
Hammerhead (1968)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

An American agent has tracked down the stronghold of an evil criminal mastermind, determined to take over the world (what, another one ?).

Director: David Miller
Stars: Vince Edwards, Judy Geeson, Peter Vaughan
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A security leak is found at a Southern California atomic plant. The authorities stand in fear that the information leaked would go to a hostile nation. To investigate the case more ... See full summary »

Director: Gordon Douglas
Stars: Louis Hayward, Dennis O'Keefe, Louise Allbritton
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Director: Wolf Rilla
Stars: Dennis Price, Rona Anderson, Ronald Howard
Subterfuge (1968)
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A young wife is becoming very distraught over the fact that her husband, a secret service "spy" for England, has changed his mind about transferring away so that he can spend more time with... See full summary »

Director: Peter Graham Scott
Stars: Gene Barry, Joan Collins, Richard Todd
Thriller | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A G-man searches for a communist sleeper-cell in Boston.

Director: Alfred L. Werker
Stars: George Murphy, Finlay Currie, Virginia Gilmore
Documentary
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Director: Jake West
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A renowned and relentless Paris detective takes his first vacation in eleven years at a small inn in the French countryside. There he meets and falls in love with the hotelier's daughter, ... See full summary »

Director: Joseph H. Lewis
Stars: Steven Geray, Micheline Cheirel, Eugene Borden
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
...
Henry Houghton
...
...
Elizabeth Gee
David Kossoff ...
Nancy Nevinson ...
Thorley Walters ...
Cmdr. Winters
Gillian Lewis ...
Marjorie Shaw
Newton Blick ...
P.O. Meadows
Philip Latham ...
Captain Ray
Cyril Chamberlain ...
Anderson
Justine Lord ...
Christina
Patrick Barr ...
Captain Warner
Derek Francis ...
Chief Supt. Croft
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Blake
Basil Dignam ...
2nd Member at Lord's
Edit

Storyline

The film is based on the actual events of the Portland Spy Ring trial in the U.K. A disgruntled Navy Clerk is transferred to a secret research establishment and is subsequently black-mailed/paid by Czech intelligence to procure secrets for them. He seduces the secretary who controls the most secret documents, and they enjoy the fruits of their treachery until the British authorities begin to close in on them. Written by Tom Longshaw <longshaw@signal.dera.gov.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

spy | blackmail | independent film | See All (3) »

Taglines:

Step by step, the story of the Spy Ring that surprised the world!

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

28 May 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ring of Treason  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Soundtracks

Hearts of Oak
(uncredited)
Traditional
KPM Music Ltd
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
The "infamous five" (Portland Spy Ring case)
10 November 2009 | by (Belgium) – See all my reviews

"Ring of spies" is a sober but faithful reconstruction in documentary style of the events surrounding the British "Portland Spy Ring". On January 7th 1961, 5 people were arrested in London in connection with espionage activities in the Admiralty Underwater Weapons Establishment in Portland. It was the first major success against a spy network in the UK. It also remains a case which is still today shrouded in a lot of mystery.

Spider in the Portland web was Konon T. Molody, who took the alias of "Gordon Lonsdale". As a facade, this Russian spy posed as a Canadian businessman, renting jukeboxes, bubblegum and gambling machines. This cover allowed him to travel extensively without raising suspicion. Being full of pep, having good looks, lots of cash and a shiny Studebaker, he had lots of beautiful girlfriends attending his cocktail parties. However, behind his "olé olé" facade, he was a skillful KGB-agent, well trained to handle special photographic equipment and to run a spy ring. He was assisted by alias "Peter and Helen Kroger". The Krogers were living in a cozy bungalow at 45 Cranley Drive in the leafy suburb of Ruislip in West-London, posing as sellers of antique books. In reality they were Morris and Lona Cohen, two veteran communist agents, who had previously been involved in the Rosenberg spy case. They managed to slip through the holes of the FBI dragnet, and established themselves under a new -false- identity in the UK. It is interesting to point out that the Ruislip bungalow was situated nearby a US Air Force base. The "Krogers" were responsible to send the material Lonsdale brought to them to Moscow. That material came from two civilians working at Portland, Harry Houghton and Ethel Gee.

Houghton was a staff member of the naval attaché of the British Embassy in Poland in 1951. Already at that time, attracted by easy cash, he was involved in illegal activities, including in black market operations. Starting innocently with coffee, he turned to lucrative medical drugs, a bit like Harry Lime in the "Third Man". He needed the money for entertaining a girlfriend and for his heavy drinking. This vulnerability made him an interesting target for the Polish secret police UB. However, their new asset spoiled it all, by causing outrage during a party at the Embassy in 1952.

This is the starting point of "Ring of spies". After this incident, Houghton is send back to the UK. Although his drinking habits made him a security risk, he gets cleared for a job in the secret Portland facility, specialized in submarine warfare. Pure mismanagement ? Made possible thanks to the intervention of a sufficiently high ranking British civil servant with ties to the Soviets ? Things become even stranger, when somewhere in 1955 or '56, Houghton's wife introduced a complaint against her husband. She told the authorities that her husband brought secret documents to his home. After a rather sloppy investigation (?), the accusation was brushed aside as being unfounded, merely the result of the frustrations of a woman badly treated by her husband. In 1956 she divorced him, and Harry's money problems started again. This led him to move to a small caravan. Probably in the same year, agents from the Eastern Bloc contacted him again, and offered him cash in exchange for secret papers. With the help of his colleague Ethel Gee, he's soon able to move to a nice house and to buy a car, making exactly the same mistakes as Aldrich Ames (see "Traitor within") many years later.

Peter Wright describes in his controversial book "Spy Catcher" how the revelations of a Polish source dubbed "Sniper" helped the British and Americans to identify Houghton, than to pick up the trail that led to Lonsdale and the Krogers. The British had to be particularly careful not to scare off professionals such as Lonsdale or the Krogers. Therefor, it is interesting to combine watching "Ring of spies" with the 1987 movie "A pack of lies". To quote Writerasfilmcritic, who wrote an excellent comment for IMDb about it : "Pack of Lies" is a very interesting drama (about) MI5 agents, led by Alan Bates as "Stuart", (who) skillfully manipulates a well-intentioned British family into believing that they are merely police on a routine investigation who need to use their home (...) "just for the weekend", in order to surveil a suspect who has been tracked into their neighborhood. (End quotation)

POL depicts how MI5 sets up a surveillance in the Ruislip home of Bill and Ruth Search, who happened to live just across the Krogers. The presence of the MI5 agents is soon causing tremendous stress for the Searches,especially for the shy Ruth, who only has one real friend… Helen Kroger! (In POL she looks more flamboyant as the real one)

The defection of "Sniper" to the West, accelerated the arrests of the Portland Spy Ring. Interestingly, Peter Wright is convinced that Moscow knew that Lonsdale had been identified by MI5, but willingly sacrificed him to protect a super-mole within the British intelligence community. Someone within MI5 or 6 who told Moscow all about the progress in the counter-espionage effort against the Portland Spy Ring.

Both Lonsdale and the Krogers received long term prison sentences, but were released a few years later, in exchanged for a British spy. And even this sordid affair had a little bit of fairy tale-quality, as Houghton and Gee married, once they got released from prison.


6 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Why no comment? sould
Fine English film. stephandunbar
Discuss Ring of Treason (1964) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?