7.1/10
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54 user 28 critic

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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Writers:

(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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...
...
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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 | love | spy | u boat | murder | See All (88) »

Taglines:

To love a stranger is easy... To kill a lover is not. See more »

Genres:

Romance | Thriller | War

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

24 July 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La isla de las tormentas  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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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 exotic location of the coast-swept isle known as "Storm Island" which features in the second part of this movie was portrayed in this film by The Isle of Mull, which is also known as Mull, and is located off the west coast of Scotland. It is the second largest island of the Inner Hebrides and is situated in the Scottish council district of Argyll and Bute. It's Scottish Gaelic wording is spelt Muile and is pronounced mule in their dialect. It is the fourth largest island of both Scotland and also Great Britain. This island setting is depicted in this film as having few buildings and residents though in real life it is far more cosmopolitan and occupied containing its own villages, castles, and tourist spots. As a filming location, at the time of production, the island had been most famous for being the island setting in the Powell-Pressburger film, 'I Know Where I'm Going!' (1945). 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: [calling on radio to submarine] Singvogel. Hier ist die Nadel. Kommen.
["Songbird. This is the Needle. Come."]
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Connections

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

Soundtracks

For He's a Jolly Good Fellow
(uncredited)
Traditional
Sung by wedding guests with modified lyrics ("For They Are Jolly Good Fellows")
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User Reviews

fairly generous
22 September 2004 | by (san francisco) – See all my reviews

Hitchcock could have come close to the last half hour: look at his Frenzy, made seven or eight years before this for a peek at how similarly he looks in parts of this.

In fact the movie is only a notch below that film, better in some ways, much worse in others. The first two thirds being only standard thriller stuff that any decent director might have churned out. However once Sutherland reaches the island, his character takes on a kind of Frankenstein quality: the monster we thought we have been watching takes on a sudden pathos that you seldom get with run of the mill thrillers.

And for that matter, even in most Hitchcocks. Sutherland was a perfect choice for the role, and Nelligan is his equal. Very well cast these two.

The last minute of the film, without giving anything away slips a little.

It should have had that lopped off.

But that is a very minor quibble.

Also it is a very rare chance to catch one of Miklos Roszas scores. Rosza always could be picked out from any other, and he is more or less just going through the notes here, a long way from his best, but even Roszas worst were better than a lot of composers bests.

And compared to most of the thrillers of the eighties and nineties, this is a bloody masterpiece.


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