125 user 54 critic

The Boys from Brazil (1978)

A Nazi hunter in Paraguay discovers a sinister and bizarre plot to rekindle the Third Reich.


(novel), (screenplay)

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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 1 win & 10 nominations. See more awards »


Cast overview, first billed only:
Esther Lieberman
Frieda Maloney
Barry Kohler (as Steven Guttenberg)
Sidney Beynon
Mrs. Doring
David Bennett
Mrs. Curry
Jeremy Black ...
Professor Bruckner


Barry Kohler, a young Nazi hunter, tracks down a group of former SS officers meeting in Paraguay in the late 1970s. The Nazis, led by Dr Mengele, are planning something. Old Nazi hunter, Ezra Lieberman, is at first uninterested in Kohler's findings. But when he is told something of their plan, he is eager to find out more. Lieberman visits several homes in Europe and the U.S. in order to uncover the Nazi plot. It is at one of these houses he notices something strange, which turns out to be a horrible discovery. Written by Rob Hartill

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


If they survive...will we?


Drama | Thriller


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

6 October 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Los niños del Brasil  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


All the three main actors of the film appeared in at least one film directed by Alfred Hitchcock: Laurence Olivier in Rebecca (1940), Gregory Peck in Spellbound (1945) and James Mason in North by Northwest (1959). See more »


When the geneticist is talking to Lieberman, he tells him that twins raised separately have exactly opposite personalities when, in fact, they have been shown to have quite similar personalities. See more »


Dr. Josef Mengele: He betrayed me, he betrayed you, he betrayed the Aryan race!
See more »


Remade as The Boys from Brazil See more »


Music by Jerry Goldsmith
Lyrics by Hal Shaper
Sung by Elaine Paige
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User Reviews

Intriguing If Implausible
24 August 2002 | by (Durham Region, Ontario, Canada) – See all my reviews

A very well done (if quite implausible) fictional account about a post World War II Nazi plot based in Paraguay and led by Josef Mengele that could lead to the establishment of the Fourth Reich.

Gregory Peck was well cast as the evil Mengele. Having seen him primarily in "good guy" roles, I was impressed by how well he pulled off this role as one of the more sinister characters of the 20th century. Laurence Olivier also put on a good performance as the Nazi hunter Lieberman.

The basics of the story (I won't give it away) are implausible, but strike me as the sort of thing Nazi scientists might have wanted to do if the knowledge had been around in the 1940's. Some parts are predictable (I figured out who - or what - the "boys" were soon after they appeared) but I must confess that I wasn't able to figure out the reason behind the killing of the 65 year old civil servants who were married to younger women until it was revealed. And the ending of the movie was appropriately spine-chilling. What will this boy (indeed, these boys) grow up to be, anyway?

Well done, indeed. 8/10

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