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Eye of the Needle (1981)

A ruthless German spy, trying to get out of Britain with vital information about D-Day, must spend time with a young woman and her crippled husband.

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(based on the novel by), (screenplay)
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1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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George Belbin ...
Faith Brook ...
Barbara Graley ...
George Lee ...
Arthur Lovegrove ...
Colin Rix ...
Barbara Ewing ...
Chris Jenkinson ...
William Merrow ...
Patrick Connor ...
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Storyline

A German spy carrying information that will reveal the target of Operation Overlord becomes involved with the wife of a crippled man on an isolated island off the Scottish coast while he waits to be picked up. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

german | woman | love | spy | u boat | See All (89) »

Taglines:

Codename: "The Needle". Only one person can stop him: The woman who loves him ! See more »

Genres:

Romance | Thriller | War

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

24 July 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La isla de las tormentas  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(archive footage)| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was made and released about three years after its source novel of the same name by author Ken Follett had been first published in 1978. The novel was Follett's first best-seller, with over three million copies sold prior to the production of this movie. The novel was first published in 1978 and the Mystery Writers of America awarded it the 1979 Edgar Award. The novel was originally entitled with the working title of "Storm Island", the setting of which represents the second half of both the novel and the film. See more »

Goofs

When Lucy drives up to (followed by Farber on foot) the lighthouse, and ditches the car, the twilight shows mostly clear skies, yet it is pouring rain and we are led to assume very stormy weather. See more »

Quotes

Faber: The war has come down to the two of us.
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Connections

Referenced in Z Channel: A Magnificent Obsession (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Roses and Moonlight
(uncredited)
Music by Alan Moorhouse
KPM Music Ltd
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User Reviews

Sutherland proves that having sex is easier than riding a bike!
28 July 2001 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Eye of the Needle is based on historical fact - the allies deceived the Germans into thinking that the D-Day invasion would take place at Calais rather than Normandy by assembling a dummy military force in Kent (not East Anglia as in the film). However, the intelligence and counter-intelligence manoeuvres that took place in maintaining this deception were rather more complex than in this simplistic movie.

The best part of the film is the culminating love affair on a remote Scottish island between the murderous German spy, Faber (Donald Sutherland), and the sexually frustrated Lucy (Kate Nelligan), which is credible and convincingly portrayed. Sutherland also has a few good scenes in the earlier parts of the movie, though certainly not the opening sequence with his curious accent and ludicrously stiff one-handed cycling! But most of the other characters are cardboard stereotypes, and the dialogue would not have been out of place in a 1930s B picture. (In particular, Ian Bannen as an MI5 sleuth makes the least of some especially ludicrous lines.)


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