A French intelligence agent becomes embroiled in the Cold War politics first with uncovering the events leading up to the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, and then back to France to break up an international Russian spy ring.

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(from the novel by), (screenplay) (as Samuel Taylor)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Per-Axel Arosenius ...
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Edmon Ryan ...
Sonja Kolthoff ...
Tina Hedström ...
Tamara Kusenov (as Tina Hedstrom)
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Donald Randolph ...
Luis Uribe (as Don Randolph)
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Storyline

A high ranking Russian official defects to the United States, where he is interviewed by US agent Michael Nordstrom. The defector reveals that a French spy ring codenamed "Topaz" has been passing NATO secrets to the Russians. Michael calls in his French friend and counterpart Andre Devereaux to expose the spies. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Hitchcock takes you behind the actual headlines to expose the most explosive spy scandal of the century! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Language:

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Release Date:

19 December 1969 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alfred Hitchcock's Topaz  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (edited)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The shop that the Kusenovs visit just before their defection is Den Permanente, a permanent exhibition of Danish Arts and Crafts. It was founded in 1931 as a cooperative by some Danish artists and craftsmen. See more »

Goofs

At Jaques Granville's party when Deveraux is setting up the meeting with his colleagues, he says, "So that's five people who can help me." The line is obviously dubbed as he clearly mouths the word "six". See more »

Quotes

Francois Picard: I've been shot... Just a little.
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Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: Somewhere in this crowd is a high Russian official who disagrees with his government's display of force and what it threatens. Very soon his conscience will force him to attempt an escape while apparently on a vacation with his family. Copenhagen, Denmark Nineteen Hundred Sixty-two See more »

Connections

Featured in The Universal Story (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The French Connection
2 April 2004 | by See all my reviews

One aspect of "Topaz" that should be kept in mind is that while American and British critics were belittling Hitchcock as a "mere entertainer," the French New Wave critics, led by Francois Truffaut, were lionizing him and Truffaut even published a book-long interview with Hitchcock published in 1967.

Hitchcock hadn't worked in years and was desperately trying to get another movie going when Universal showed him the book "Topaz" -- about spies in the French government, with a French protagonist and climactic scenes in Paris. I think that Hitchcock may have -- unwisely -- decided to do "Topaz" so he could do a "French picture."

There are some great individual scenes in Topaz -- the opening defection in Copenhagen, the suspenseful mission to get secrets from the Cubans in Harlem's Hotel Theresa (Hitchcock in Harlem?!); the hero's dangerous mission into Cuba and the death of his key contact there.

But Hitchcock really didn't like making "Topaz," he was bored and ill and resentful (Universal had killed a project called "Frenzy" -- not to be confused with the 1972 film he made of that name -- and Hitchcock was bitter about it.)

So we end up with a very half-hearted Hitchcock movie with a few good scenes, no real stars, THREE failed endings (all available to see on the DVD), and an attempt to "make nice with my French friends."


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