A grief-stricken mother takes on the LAPD to her own detriment when it stubbornly tries to pass off an obvious impostor as her missing child, while also refusing to give up hope that she will find him one day.
Berlin, July, 1945. Journalist Jake Geismer arrives to cover the Potsdam conference, issued a captain's uniform for easier passage. He also wants to find Lena, an old flame who's now a prostitute desperate to get out of Berlin. He discovers that the driver he's assigned, a cheerful down-home sadist named Corporal Tully, is Lena's keeper. When the body of a murdered man washes up in Potsdam (within the Russian sector), Jake may be the only person who wants to solve the crime: U.S. personnel are busy finding Nazis to bring to trial, the Russians and the Americans are looking for German rocket scientists, and Lena has her own secrets. Written by
The film was shot as if it had been made in 1945. Only studio back lots, sets and local Los Angeles locations were used. No radio microphones were used, the film was lit with only incandescent lights and period lenses were used on the cameras. The actors were directed to perform in a presentational, stage style. The only allowance was the inclusion of nudity, violence and cursing which would have been forbidden by the Production Code. See more »
Upon Geismer's first visit to her apartment, Lena lights the stove and begins heating a kettle. Shortly, she announces she is going to bed, leaving the kettle over the stove's flame (as well as a lit candle on the table). See more »
Excellent story telling in the post World War II tradition of THE THIRD MAN
The best film to evoke the period in recent memory. Blanchett and Clooney lead a strong cast and make a better film than expected from the novel's source material. Archival newsreel footage of 1945 Berlin and black and white cinematography put to very effective use. Toby McGuire as a self-serving, mean spirited weasel shows another side of the usually boyish charmer. Beau Bridges well cast as the US army brass who bears a self-righteous similarity to contemporary military higher-ups who think they have a corner on deciding the right thing to do. Secrets, lies, love and intrigue woven together to form a provocative study of moral ambiguities and tough choices in wartime. Highly recommended.
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