An investigator from the War Crimes Commission travels to Connecticut to find an infamous Nazi.


Orson Welles


Anthony Veiller (screenplay), Victor Trivas (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Edward G. Robinson ... Mr. Wilson
Loretta Young ... Mary Longstreet
Orson Welles ... Professor Charles Rankin
Philip Merivale ... Judge Adam Longstreet
Richard Long ... Noah Longstreet
Konstantin Shayne ... Konrad Meinike
Byron Keith ... Dr. Jeffrey Lawrence
Billy House ... Mr. Potter
Martha Wentworth ... Sara


Wilson of the War Crimes Commission is seeking Franz Kindler, mastermind of the Holocaust, who has effectively erased his identity. Wilson releases Kindler's former comrade Meinike and follows him to Harper, Connecticut, where he is killed before he can identify Kindler. Now Wilson's only clue is Kindler's fascination with antique clocks; but, though Kindler seems secure in his new identity, he feels his past closing in. Written by Rod Crawford <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


It's a Triple -Thrill Combination That Can't Miss! (print ad - Lubbock Morning Avalanche - Lindsey Theatre - Lubbock, Texas - December 12, 1946 ) See more »


Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Orson Welles originally wanted Agnes Moorehead to play the FBI part. believing that it would be much more interesting to have a spinster lady at the heels of this Nazi but studio head,Goetz didn't like the idea said no and instead gave him Edward G. Robinson. Welles worked on the rewrites with original writer Anthony Veiller and an uncredited John Huston, who was in the army at the time, Welles wrote and shot scenes at the begining of the film which he described as ' a whole series of very wild dreamlike events'. These worried Goetz and producer Sam Spiegel , who at the time was using the pseudonym SP Eagel, so out they came. See more »


Towards the end of the film, it's snowing. Welles is in the clock tower with Loretta Young and Edward G Robinson. Robinson tells Welles that the town's people are surrounding the church. The camera shows the crowd crossing one corner and there's no snow on the pavement but, a bit further up the street where there's thick snow, three men cross the road leaving no footprints. See more »


[first lines]
Mr. Wilson: Leave the cell door open. That's all there is to it. Let him escape.
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Alternate Versions

Also available in a computer-colorized version. See more »


Featured in Disappearance at Clifton Hill (2019) See more »

User Reviews

Deliciously campy performance from Welles makes this a must see.
6 September 2010 | by glock38_110See all my reviews

"Hitchcockian" effort from Orson Welles in which a police detective, played by Edward G. Robinson, is on the hunt for a Nazi war criminal in small town USA, played by Orson Welles.

Stylish and suspenseful, Welles does a fine job behind the camera, he plays his character in an over the top "look at me I'm the bad guy!" manner, ham fisted in some scenes especially towards the end, his character's final scene is both brutal and hilarious.

A lesser work in his canon but a very good film nonetheless, highly recommended.


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English | Spanish | French

Release Date:

August 1946 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Date with Destiny See more »


Box Office


$1,034,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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