An American returning home from Baghdad and seeing his girl in Britain on the way agrees to take a message to the secret service. Once in London he is picked up by the gang involved, who ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Bill Martin
Clare Owen ...
Barbara
Anita West ...
Ruth Graydon
John Arnatt ...
Sharp
Alan Tilvern ...
Warner
...
Peter Halliday
...
Henry Spiroulos
Reginald Marsh ...
Oliver
Colin Tapley ...
John Bowen
...
Jack Carter (as Anthony Wager)
...
Ransome
Jack Taylor ...
Holt
Cecil Waters ...
Kalik
Edward Ogden ...
Chase
John Murray Scott ...
Endacott
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Storyline

An American returning home from Baghdad and seeing his girl in Britain on the way agrees to take a message to the secret service. Once in London he is picked up by the gang involved, who have by then killed the original Middle East agent. He escapes, but he and his girl friend are a marked couple as they retreat to Seaford on the south coast to act as bait in an MI5 plan to catch the thugs. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

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Drama

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Release Date:

July 1963 (UK)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Paul Maxwell and Clare Owen become bait in an effort to take down an espionage ring
22 July 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Shadow of Fear" came packaged with "Echo of Diana", a twofer of short British spy films of the early sixties. This one is not up to "Echo of Diana" in complexity or execution.

Paul Maxwell plays an American who has been doing some oil work in Iraq. He's returning to London to pick up with Clare Owen whom he hopes to marry. On his last night in Baghdad, he has some casual drinks with acquaintances and meets Eric Pohlmann. I'll say right off that the more I see of Pohlmann, the more I like his acting and am impressed by it. He can make a number of foreign accents seem just right. He only appears here in the movie's beginning. At any rate, another fellow comes to Maxwell's apartment and urges him to deliver a message to a Mr. Oliver in London, which Maxwell reluctantly agrees to do. However, it's coded data and that gets Maxwell in the crosshairs of industrial or oil spies.

Back in London, the spies impersonate police and Maxwell barely escapes an attempt on his life. He and Owen flee London to an uncle (Colin Tapley) of Owen's who has a contact in British intelligence MI5. This leads into a scheme by which Maxwell and Owen agree to be bait for the gang, and this is a gang that has made a second attempt on their lives as they were driving to Tapley's country dwelling! There is mighty little standing between the gang's intentions and Maxwell and Owen, and a mighty loose thread by which MI5 is keeping tabs on them. The MI5 people seem not to care much about the risks or else they are over-confident in their capacity to reel in the gang at the appropriate time. We viewers are not that sure.

This picture misses the mark in the directing of its final action scenes, which are quite awkward in places and do not exploit the script's potential. In fact, the picture is flatter than it needed to have been, given the script's potential.

"Shadow of Fear" is somewhat below par within its class of these British quickies.


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