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Face of the Frog (1959)

Der Frosch mit der Maske (original title)
Both Scotland Yard and an amateur American sleuth are tracking a master criminal known as The Frog. This moniker refers to the bulging-eyed mask worn by the evildoer, and is reflected by ... See full summary »

Director:

Harald Reinl

Writers:

Edgar Wallace (novel), Egon Eis (script) (as Trygve Larsen) | 1 more credit »
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Joachim Fuchsberger ... Richard Gordon
Elfie von Kalckreuth ... Ella Bennet (as Eva Anthes)
Jochen Brockmann ... Philo Johnson
Carl Lange ... John Bennet (as Karl Lange)
Dieter Eppler ... Joshua Broad
Eva Pflug ... Lolita
Walter Wilz Walter Wilz ... Ray Bennet
Fritz Rasp ... Ezra Maitland
Erwin Strahl Erwin Strahl ... Sergeant Balder aka Nummer 7 (German version) / Sergeant Barclay aka Number 7 (English version)
Ernst Fritz Fürbringer ... Sir Archibald (as Ernst W. Fürbringer)
Eddi Arent ... James
Ulrich Beiger Ulrich Beiger ... Everett
Reinhard Kolldehoff ... Lew Brady
Michel Hildesheim Michel Hildesheim ... Mills
Charlotte Scheier-Herold Charlotte Scheier-Herold ... Lady Maggie Farnsworth (German version) / Lady Aubrid Farnsworth (English version)
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Storyline

Both Scotland Yard and an amateur American sleuth are tracking a master criminal known as The Frog. This moniker refers to the bulging-eyed mask worn by the evildoer, and is reflected by the frog icons painfully tatooed onto the forearms of his henchmen. The trail leads to the country manor of an enigmatic, steely-eyed nabob, whose repressed son has eyes for the artistes at the Lolita cabaret, and whose lovely daughter captures the fancy of both the American playboy and the villain himself. Murder, kidnapping and seduction ensue. Written by GoblinHairedGuy

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A classical "Criminal" (colloquial) - an electrifying film See more »

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Denmark | West Germany

Language:

German

Release Date:

4 April 1960 (Denmark) See more »

Also Known As:

Face of the Frog See more »

Filming Locations:

Copenhagen, Denmark See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Most of the outdoor scenes were shot in Denmark. See more »

Goofs

When they watch the film that Richard Gordon shot in the nightclub, the lower reel of the projector is not moving. It should be, otherwise the film already passed through the projector would be dumped on the floor. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Pastewka: Die Strategie der Schnecke (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Nachts im Nebel an der Themse
Music by Karl Bette
Text by Theo Maria Werner (as Theo M. Werner) and Hans Billian
Performed by Eva Pflug (dubbed by unknown)
See more »

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User Reviews

Certainly not the best, but the first Edgar Wallace "krimi"
21 January 2009 | by lazarilloSee all my reviews

The Frog is a master criminal who is sought both by the police and by an amateur American sleuth and his comical butler/sidekick. The Frog falls in love with a young woman and hatches a ridiculous Rube Goldbeg-like plot to get her to give herself him. He uses a singing siren named "Lolita" to ensnare her ne'r-do-well brother into a gruesome murder plot. The brother is convicted of the capital crime and sentenced to death only to find the executioner is someone very familiar to him.

As other have said, this is the first of West German Edgar Wallace krimis. It's certainly not the best, but it is pretty entertaining. The comical sidekick (here played by Eddie Aren't) would become a staple of this series, to the annoyance of some, but personally I don't think this kind of comedy really hurts these films that much because the plots are already delightfully absurd and villains like the Frog are more than a little cartoonish to begin with(but I mean that in a good way). The butler/sidekick here kind of anticipates (perhaps even influenced?) the "Kato" character in the "Pink Panther" series in that he is always sparring with his boss to keep him sharp. The bigger liability here, however, is the "American" protagonist himself. But Joachim Fuchsberger, who was in nearly all these movies, would get a lot better in the future entries in the series, especially when he got to play an "English" detective (a role at which the German actor was much more convincing).

But in addition to the serial-comic strip elements of the plot, there is also a little bit of raciness courtesy of "Lolita" (Eva Pflug), and some surprisingly gruesome violence--the centerpiece murder and a scene where the Frog very violently dispenses with one of his accomplices. In any event, if you enjoy the German krimi series (or the later but the closely related Italian gialli), you certainly won't want to miss this first one.


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