Former British secret agent Harry Palmer now runs a Private Investigation company in Russia. He gets a job to locate and recover a consignment of stolen Plutonium, and with the help of ... See full summary »
John Preston is a British agent with the task of preventing the Russians detonating a nuclear explosion next to an American base in the UK. The Russians are hoping this will shatter the 'special relationship' between the two countries.
Cat burglar Henry Clarke and his accomplices the Moreaus attempt to steal diamonds from the château of millionaire Salinas. However, Henry's partners in crime aren't the most emotionally stable people.
A number of leading Western scientists have been kidnapped only to reappear a fews days later. Unfortunately, each scientist has been brainwashed and is now completely useless. The British send their agent, Harry Palmer, to investigate. Palmer is surprised to be selected for such a mission (considering his past) and believes he has been chosen because he is expendable. Written by
Dave Jenkins <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Harry's glasses frames were dark brown, contrary to the widely held view that they were black. They were a style called "Teviot 74" manufactured by a company called UK Optical. They were already popular at the time for being a stylish and inexpensive alternative to the standard models that were issued for free by the National Health Service in Britain. They became even more popular after the success of this film. Len Deighton wore the same frames at this time. Those frames have been described by some as the first affordable "designer" frames available in the UK. See more »
When Dalby meets Ross in his club, Ross's right hand is in the air on the long shot but holding the newspaper in the close-up. The position of his left hand changes between shots as well, with the fingers changing from pointing down to being horizontal. See more »
[Palmer and Dalby are attending a performance of a military band playing Mozart]
Very neat. Must we sit through any more of this torture? I've got a lot of things to do.
I think they're playing very well.
Tell me who wins.
[gets up and leaves]
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I got the rare chance to see this film recently on Turner Classic Movies one afternoon and I was completely blown away by what I saw. This was the first of three films to depicted the normal activities and dangerous and extreme situations of British intelligence agent Harry Palmer(played by Michael Caine who became an international star with his portrayal of the working stiff/British spy). This was an espionage thriller that went straight by the book and then some which is based on Len Deighton's best selling novel. This was in no way compare to the James Bond spy flicks that came out the same time as this one,but this was totally different and for a very good reason. Palmer was a 9 to 5 stiff who was going by a measly paycheck,meeting in drab locations and of course has to sign for everything he gets including getting an issued gun and also getting transportation to get to and from his assignments and so forth as the story proceeds. You don't know whether not to like or dislike the character as he is in constant danger at every turn as his closest friends he meets at the office becomes his deadliest enemies out to kill him at any cost with an unglamourous death in the wings as you the viewer be grabbing your seat and hoping the outcome will end up with. Caine's performance as the drab agent is a must see and it also concludes toward the end of who the villain is and who is trying to frame him as well as kill him. Cliffhanging suspense! This was one of the most tense and stylish thriller of all time which in one point makes it so "realistic" that makes it distinctive from all the others in its genre. While British agent 007 was fantasy,Palmer was real and down to earth and it shows. A working class Joe. Caine goes on to make two more Palmer films that were not as successful as the first one;"Funeral in Berlin"(1966),and the last one " The Billion Dollar Brain"(1969),but in all this one was a gem of a good spy flick.
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