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Action in Arabia (1944)

Approved | | Crime, Drama, Romance | 6 July 1944 (Mexico)
Reporter Michael Gordon uncovers intrigue in Damascus, where the Allies and Nazis struggle for control of Arab sympathies.

Director:

Léonide Moguy (as Leonide Moguy)

Writers:

Philip MacDonald (original screenplay), Herbert J. Biberman (original screenplay) (as Herbert Biberman)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
George Sanders ... Michael Gordon
Virginia Bruce ... Yvonne Danesco
Lenore Aubert ... Mounirah al-Rashid
Gene Lockhart ... Josef Danesco
Robert Armstrong ... Matthew Reed
H.B. Warner ... Abdul El Rashid
Alan Napier ... Eric Latimer
André Charlot André Charlot ... Andre Leroux (as Andre Charlot)
Marcel Dalio ... Chakka - Arab Henchman at Airport
Robert Andersen ... William Chalmers
Jamiel Hasson ... Eben Kareem
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Storyline

Michael Gordon, star reporter with a nose for trouble, is heading home after completing a difficult assignment in Iraq. On a Damascus stopover he relays a tip to a fellow American newsman who subsequently ends up in a local camel market with a knife in his back. Even though everyone, including the American legation, seems to want Gordon to leave the country, he feels obliged to find his friend's murderer. Among the red herrings he must sort through in the "World's Oldest City" are an informing card cheat, a beautiful femme fatale, an enigmatic hotel owner, a Frenchman with two aliases, and several sinister Arabs. In short order, Gordon foils Nazi plots to unite the Arab tribes against the Allies and help the Germans seize the Suez Canal. Written by duke1029@aol.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Woman of Mystery. Land of Intrigue !


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French | Arabic | German

Release Date:

6 July 1944 (Mexico) See more »

Also Known As:

Danger in Damascus See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$200,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The aging sheik who defends his desert fortress against Nazi invaders is played by one of the longest-lived and busiest of Hollywood character actors - H.B. Warner had pivotal and/or memorable roles in many a classic film. He portrayed the title role of Jesus in the silent version of King of Kings, was the aging, addled town druggist in the perennial holiday favorite It's a Wonderful Life, and was one of Norman Desmond's "waxworks" in Sunset Blvd. See more »

Goofs

After Gordon sits down at the gambling table, he is shown putting his wallet back into his jacket's inside pocket twice - once is a shot from behind and again in the next shot from the front. See more »

Quotes

Matthew Reed: Officially I think you're crazy. Unofficially I'm off duty.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Inglourious Basterds (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

La Marseillaise
(1792)
Written by Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle
Variations in the score when the Free French Cross of Lorraine is shown
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User Reviews

 
Sanders - a smooth-talking hero in a white dinner-jacket
9 July 2000 | by ADAM-53See all my reviews

Basically, this is a Casablanca rip-off by RKO about passion and hidden Nazi sympathies in World War II Damascus. Ex-Simon Templer ("The Saint!") star George Sanders is on impeccable form as a New York reporter (with a British accent) on the trail of Nazi sympathisers in the desert. When his fellow reporter is murdered, Sanders (in a white dinner-jacket that predates Sean Connery's wearing of it in Goldfinger by some 20 years) sets off coolly to track down the killers, uncovering a plot in which the Nazis aim to unite the Arab tribes against the Allied forces. The story is pure hokum, but never mind. Some of the action and the audacity of the plot are breath-taking and anyone who enjoys The Saint or The Falcon films, or Casablanca, will probably enjoy it. It's only a pity Sanders didn't make more films as the hero -- this was his last. After this, he would only play the sneering villain and, eventually, become a real-life parody of his own screen persona. A pity, as he really could have been more hero than cad when the fit took him. If you like this movie, check out the novel by George Sanders (actually ghosted by Falcon screenwriter Craig Rice) called "Crime on My Hands" in which Sanders has to solve a muder on a film set. It's light, amusing and reminiscent of the Saint/Falcon films that made Sanders a star in the first place.


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