MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Up 36,031 this week

The Defector (1966)
"L'espion" (original title)

5.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.8/10 from 461 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 2 critic

Montgomery Cliff (in his last role) plays James Bower, an American physicist visiting West Germany who's recruited by a shady CIA agent, named Adam, to help them with the defection of a ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 30 titles
created 15 Jun 2011
 
a list of 38 titles
created 11 Aug 2011
 
a list of 18 titles
created 01 Feb 2014
 
a list of 159 titles
created 6 months ago
 
a list of 35 titles
created 4 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "The Defector" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Defector (1966)

The Defector (1966) on IMDb 5.8/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Defector.
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A graduating poet/teacher falls in love with a Southern woman, and then the Civil War and her past create problems.

Director: Edward Dmytryk
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Elizabeth Taylor, Eva Marie Saint
The Bobo (1967)
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Unsuccessful singing bullfighter Juan arrives in Barcelona to try his luck in a big town. He finally persuades a devious local impresario to book him, but only on the condition that Juan ... See full summary »

Director: Robert Parrish
Stars: Peter Sellers, Britt Ekland, Rossano Brazzi
Dames (1934)
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Multi-millionaire Ezra Ounce wants to start a campaign against 'filthy' forms of entertainment, like Broadway-Shows. He comes to his relatives families and makes them members of his ... See full summary »

Directors: Ray Enright, Busby Berkeley
Stars: Joan Blondell, Dick Powell, Ruby Keeler
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

The true story of two New York City cops. Greenberg & Hantz fought the system, became detectives and were known on the streets as "Batman & Robin".

Director: Gordon Parks
Stars: Ron Leibman, David Selby, Sheila Frazier
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An former boxer, turned cab driver, has to hide from the police, when his badgering wife is murdered by the jewel thief she was having an affair with.

Director: Phil Karlson
Stars: John Payne, Evelyn Keyes, Brad Dexter
I Confess (1953)
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Refusing to give into police investigators' questions of suspicion, due to the seal of confession, a priest becomes the prime suspect in a murder.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Anne Baxter, Karl Malden
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

The eldest daughter of a Professor of Psychology at a large conservative university causes havoc, and great embarrassment, for her father with her free-willed and uninhibited lifestyle.

Director: Michael Gordon
Stars: David Niven, Lola Albright, Chad Everett
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

Dancer George Raft (Ray Danton) finds himself involved with the criminal underworld. After a conflict with gangster boss Frank Donatella (Joe de Santis), he is exiled to Hollywoood, where ... See full summary »

Director: Joseph M. Newman
Stars: Ray Danton, Jayne Mansfield, Julie London
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In a seaside village, a group of local young men mingle among the seasonal tourists in search of sexual conquests. Near the end of one summer, the leader of the group, Tinker, a strolling ... See full summary »

Director: Michael Winner
Stars: Oliver Reed, Jane Merrow, Barbara Ferris
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

The daughter of iconic actor John Barrymore becomes reunited with her father after a ten year estrangement and engages in his self-destructive lifestyle.

Director: Art Napoleon
Stars: Dorothy Malone, Errol Flynn, Efrem Zimbalist Jr.
Lonelyhearts (1958)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Eager to land a journalistic position, Adam White goes to work as an advice-giving newspaper columnist. His editor, Shrike, takes pleasure in browbeating his alcoholic wife Florence for her... See full summary »

Director: Vincent J. Donehue
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Myrna Loy, Robert Ryan
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A disfigured watchmaker with a grudge against society embarks on a life of crime.

Director: Robert Florey
Stars: Peter Lorre, Evelyn Keyes, Don Beddoe
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Prof. James Bower
...
Counselor Peter Heinzmann (as Hardy Kruger)
...
Agent Adams
Macha Méril ...
Frieda Hoffmann
David Opatoshu ...
Orlovsky
Christine Delaroche ...
Ingrid Weiß
Hannes Messemer ...
Dr. Saltzer
Karl Lieffen ...
Major Windisch
Uta Levka ...
Mädchen unter der Dusche
Edit

Storyline

Montgomery Cliff (in his last role) plays James Bower, an American physicist visiting West Germany who's recruited by a shady CIA agent, named Adam, to help them with the defection of a Russian scientist. But an East German secret agent, named Peter Heinzeman, learns of Bower's meeting with Adam and threatens Bower to mind his own business, while Bower learns of a back story to all this involving stolen microfilm that each side wants. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

16 November 1966 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Lautlose Waffen  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Clift insisted on doing all of the stunts in this film himself, which he did, despite poor health. See more »

Goofs

Early in the film, Bower is talking to Heinzmann. Bower is holding his cigarette vertically because he has a long ash. The POV switches and Bower has his hand down and cigarette horizontal, still with a long ash on it and he quickly taps the ash off into the ashtray. See more »

Crazy Credits

Most items in the closing credits appear and/or disappear in time with rhythms in the final music. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Montgomery Clift (1983) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Monty's Swan Song
27 August 2011 | by (Glendale, CA) – See all my reviews

During the espionage film craze of the 1960's, "spy" movies generally fell into one of two categories: the colorful, just-for-fun spoofs full of whiz-bang gadgetry and exotic sexpots, and the "serious" examinations of the cold war and - most pointedly - its effect on those caught up in it. THE DEFECTOR, which has more than a little in common with Hitchcock's "Torn Curtain" from the same year, is of the latter type.

As an American physicist recruited by the CIA for a behind-the-iron-curtain mission, Clift is, as always, fascinating to watch. Of all the screen's best-known method actors, he was the only one who never let the mechanics show. With a performer like Brando, one can often sense what the actor's thinking. With Monty, you sense what the character is thinking. Add to this the high-wire nature of the personal vulnerability he projected in his performances (especially the later ones), and the sum is never less than compelling. He often utilized that quality as an effective element of his characterizations, and as a man of letters whose life appears to consist entirely of his twin devotions to science and art, and who finds himself in dangerous territory (emotional and otherwise), it works well here. Despite Clift's often obvious frailty, he executes some rather demanding physical feats, and this, too, fits within the characterization of a man who discovers, by necessity, strengths he hadn't known he possessed.

As espionage drama, THE DEFECTOR is strictly routine, but it's enlivened by both some unexpected plot twists and the presence of players such as Roddy MacDowall as the genial but oily operative who employs blackmail-with-a-smile to enlist Clift's cooperation, David Opatoshu as a not-to-be-crossed intelligence overseer and - most outstandingly - Hardy Kruger as Clift's equally unwilling eastern bloc counterpart. Kruger was an immensely engaging performer, and his scenes with Clift feature some entertaining sparring (between both the characters and the actors).

Director Raoul Levy (who, only a year younger than Clift, also died during the year of the film's release) unfortunately yields to some now-dated 60's-style psychedelia, but it's fairly brief, and he largely keeps the proceedings on a straightforward and even keel. If the film has one quality which lifts it above the norm for the genre, it's the attention it pays to the humanity of the characters - both major and minor - in all its forms, from the noblest to the basest.

THE DEFECTOR is, overall, an intelligent - if not showy - film, and although not terribly remarkable otherwise, definitely worthwhile for any Montgomery Clift devotee.


4 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Where can I find a copy of this film? mightyles
OFFICIAL DVD now available directly from Warner's webpage! simonhowson
A Website That Sells The Defector on DVD and VHS mightyles
What the deal with the broken shoe? beautifulsillo
What Might Have Been dustinblythe-1
Smurfs? morgie27
Discuss The Defector (1966) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?