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Secret Agent (1936)

Not Rated | | Mystery, Thriller | 15 June 1936 (USA)
After three British Agents are assigned to assassinate a mysterious German spy during World War I, two of them become ambivalent when their duty to the mission conflicts with their consciences.

Director:

Alfred Hitchcock

Writers:

Campbell Dixon (play), W. Somerset Maugham (novel) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Madeleine Carroll ... Elsa Carrington
Peter Lorre ... The General
John Gielgud ... Richard Ashenden / Edgar Brodie
Robert Young ... Robert Marvin
Percy Marmont ... Caypor
Florence Kahn Florence Kahn ... Mrs. Caypor
Charles Carson ... 'R'
Lilli Palmer ... Lilli
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Storyline

During the first world war, novelist Edgar Brodie is sent to Switzerland by the Intelligence Service. He has to kill a German agent. During the mission he meets a fake general first and then Elsa Carrington who helps him in his duty. Written by Claudio Sandrini <pulp99@geocities.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Mystery - Intrigue - Romance, burn a flaming trail among the gay capitals of Europe See more »

Genres:

Mystery | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | German | French

Release Date:

15 June 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Laugh Track: Secret Agent See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Full Range Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Gielgud filmed this during the day while appearing on-stage in "Romeo and Juliet" opposite Edith Evans, Peggy Ashcroft and Laurence Olivier in the evening. See more »

Goofs

When the man with one arm is trying to move the coffin, the flag is draped over his right shoulder but in the next close-up, it is only covering his forearm. See more »

Quotes

Edgar Brodie: We aren't hunting a fox, we're hunting a man. He's an oldish man, with a wife. Oh, I know it's war and it's our job to do it, but that doesn't prevent it being murder - simple murder!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Alfred Hitchcock: More Than Just a Profile (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Bulgar Folk Song
(uncredited)
Traditional
Arranged by Hubert Bath
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Hitch should have remade this exciting, overlooked gem
9 November 1998 | by boris-26See all my reviews

One of the more ignored early Hitchcock thrillers, and unjustly so. In 1916 Switzerland, Bookworm John Gielguld, Beautiful Maddeline Carroll and and Pesky, over sexed Peter Lorre are three very unlikely enlisted civilians made to assassinate an unknown foreign agent. One right after another fall superb Hitichcock scenes, high on visuals, in no need of dialog. Such scenes include Gielguld and Lorre discovering a murdered agent in a noisy Swiss church, an assassination seen through a telescope while the victim's dog howls mournfully, a chase through a chocolate factory. What hurts the film is Lorre's shameless overacting, and the too neat ending. It's as if Hitchcock decided "This is beginning to ramble, let's have an explosion here." Don't be put off by co-star Robert Young's comic relief, there's a reason for it. I could picture a 1950's remake, in Vistavision in color with Cary Grant, Grace Kelly and a more restrained Peter Lorre.


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