Rip Reardon, ex-Army flier, returns to his home in French Morocco and finds his wife dead, and he suspects she has been murdered. Police Colonel Moussac insists she committed suicide. Rip ...
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Harry H. Corbett,
Rip Reardon, ex-Army flier, returns to his home in French Morocco and finds his wife dead, and he suspects she has been murdered. Police Colonel Moussac insists she committed suicide. Rip begins to suspect not only his friends but also a mysterious brunette, Ynez, a Casbah night-club singer with whom he begins to fall in love. Repeated efforts to kill Rip are made but he ultimately finds the evidence which sends him gunning against the killer...but is he mistaken?Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When Rip burgles the Police Station, he is disturbed by an officer, whom he forces into a back room. However, the fact that the officer has seen him doesn't seem to cause any problems for Rip at the hands of his friend the Commandant, who would surely have been informed. See more »
This British mystery thriller (not a Foreign Legion adventure, as I had anticipated!) owes an obvious debt to CASABLANCA (1942), but the end result – despite having the usually reliable Mate' at the helm – is unquestionably a disappointment. It was wrong to start off with a title song, followed by female star Pier Angeli performing another tune at the inevitable café, so that the expected noir-ish mood seemed almost like an afterthought! That said, the colour scheme throughout (courtesy of cinematographer Wilkie Cooper, not forgetting that Mate' had himself cut his teeth in that department) was occasionally striking. While the plot is no great shakes either, it is peopled by offbeat characters that keeps one somewhat interested: crippled WWII veteran Philip Carey returns home to his wife – who is said to abhor imperfection! – only to find her dead from an apparent suicide. Soon, however, it transpires that this in fact was a case of murder – not to mention that the victim had not quite been the dutiful spouse.
Typically, a number of suspects are on hand: Angeli herself (who had somehow become the woman's permanent guest), shady café owner James Hayter (Angeli's "keeper", who apparently came into money overnight, having previously served as the local beachcomber!), a rather wasted Dennis Price as Carey's business partner, and even painter Christopher Lee (who admits in his one scene to having had a dalliance with the deceased). To be fair, though, the identity of the killer was a surprise here – not that the investigation had elicited much in the way of suspense or action! Besides, the requisite romance between the protagonists barely gets going during the trim 87-minute duration (though the TV-sourced print I watched seemed obliged to pause for commercials after every reel!) but they get the obligatory fade-out clinch regardless! Also among the cast are Eugene Deckers as the military official in charge who knows far more than he lets on and Anthony Newley (still not having fully attained his adult look) as an animated Portuguese airline pilot who becomes chummy with Carey.
As often happens to me when watching routine fare, something in the narrative sets me off wandering on the actors' careers or private lives; here it was the fact that Lee had already played a dubious painter in his first notable film role, PENNY AND THE POWNALL CASE (1948); Angeli would herself commit suicide in 1971; and, irony of ironies, up-and-coming star Price would have his career destroyed by alcoholism and homosexuality but, in this film, his character not only berates his wife for drinking but was on the point of eloping with Carey's philandering spouse!!
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