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Crisis (1950)

While on vacation in a Latin American country, an American neurosurgeon and his wife become tangled in a revolutionary uprising against a tyrannical dictator.

Director:

Richard Brooks

Writers:

Richard Brooks (screenplay), George Tabori (story)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Cary Grant ... Dr. Eugene Norland Ferguson
José Ferrer ... Raoul Farrago (as Jose Ferrer)
Paula Raymond ... Helen Ferguson
Signe Hasso ... Senora Isabel Farrago
Ramon Novarro ... Colonel Adragon
Gilbert Roland ... Roland Gonzales
Leon Ames ... Sam Proctor
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Storyline

Husband and wife Americans Dr. Eugene and Mrs. Helen Ferguson - he a renowned neurosurgeon - are traveling through Latin America for a vacation. When they make the decision to return to New York earlier than expected, they find they are being detained by the military in the country they are in. Ultimately, they learn the reason is that President Raoul Farrago, the tyrannical military dictator of the country, has been diagnosed with a brain tumor and will die without an operation to remove it, Farrago choosing Gene as the doctor to lead the surgical team. Because of the volatile politics within the country and for his own safety as revolutionary forces would like to see him dead, Farrago refuses to go to a hospital for the operation, instead it to be done at his home. Despite not particularly liking Farrago or his ways, Gene agrees purely in his oath as a doctor. However, he ends up being caught in the middle between Farrago/his brutal regime and the revolutionaries, each side who is ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Carefree Cary Grant on a gay holiday with his lovely bride walks right into DANGER! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

7 July 1950 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Basra See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,616,455 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The sport played at the very beginning of the film, which may be foreign to modern audiences, is Jai Alai. During the first half of the twentieth century, Jai Alai was a very popular sport in Latin America, South America, and Europe. Betting on the games was a common cultural activity. In Argentina (which the writer/director admitted was the inspiration for the country in the film), most Jai Alai courts (or frontones) were closed following Peron's revolution. See more »

Goofs

The doctor announces his fee is ten percent of the patient's income, but does not say whether this means monthly, annual or some other period. See more »

Quotes

[after a rehearsal for Farrago's surgery]
Raoul Farrago: Well, doctor, did the operation go well?
Dr. Eugene Norland Ferguson: Fine. You just died.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Also available in a computer colorized version. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Unusual film for Cary Grant
29 May 2007 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Cary Grant is a noted surgeon traveling with his wife (Paula Raymond) in a Latin American country when there's a "Crisis." This 1950 black and white film also stars Jose Ferrer, Leon Ames, Ramon Novarro, and Gilbert Roland. Grant, as Dr. Ferguson, and his wife are trying to leave the country due to political unrest when they are kidnapped and brought to the home of the country's dictator, Raoul Farrago (Ferrer). There, they learn from his wife (Signe Hasso) that the leader is dying of a brain tumor, and options for an operation are few as no one wants him to live. Ferguson agrees on certain conditions. Ultimately, his wife is involved in a riot, and he sends her home. It isn't until the surgery is over that he learns that certain things have been kept from him.

This is actually a very good and underrated film, not the usual Cary Grant type of role or movie, which in itself should have sparked some interest when it was released. People know the handsome Grant and his debonair persona, his gift for physical comedy and the way he has with a line - but it's nice to remember occasionally that underneath all that star power and tailored suits there's a fine actor. Here he plays a man who makes a commitment to a patient he plainly doesn't like, and he has to fight to control his emotions. His anger over the situation makes this difficult. Ferrer is terrific as a violent man who thinks of his people as dumb children as he feathers his own nest with money that rightfully belongs to them. As his Evita-like wife, Signe Hasso has a chance to show her capabilities, and she's excellent - charming on the surface, worried about her husband, and hard as nails underneath. Hasso was a wonderful Swedish actress often relegated to B movies or to small roles in A films. Eventually she turned to theater and television. Here we see, had the roles been there for her, what a find she truly was.

It's always great to see old-timers Gilbert Roland and Ramon Novarro, the latter as Colonel Dragon, and the former as a revolutionary who wants Grant to kill Farrago on the operating table. Actually he's no better than Farrago, and Ferguson gets a bird's eye look at oppression politics.

A very good film; worth seeing for Grant, Ferrer and Hasso.


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