20 user 18 critic

The Frightened City (1961)

A small time thief is recruited by a mobster to help with the racketeering. He doesn't like the job, but with the mob on his back, a femme fatale in his bed and a sick friend to care for, he will have to keep all his wits about him.


John Lemont


Leigh Vance (original story), John Lemont (original story) | 1 more credit »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Herbert Lom ... Waldo Zhernikov
John Gregson ... Det. Inspector Sayers
Sean Connery ... Paddy Damion
Alfred Marks ... Harry Foulcher
Yvonne Romain ... Anya
Olive McFarland Olive McFarland ... Sadie
Frederick Piper Frederick Piper ... Ogle
John Stone John Stone ... Hood
David Davies David Davies ... Alf Peters
Tom Bowman Tom Bowman ... Tanky Thomas
Robert Cawdron ... Nero
George Pastell ... Sanchetti
Patrick Holt ... Supt. Carter
Sheena Marshe Sheena Marshe ... Avril (as Sheena Marsh)
Patrick Jordan ... Frankie Farmer


In London's West End, crooked mob accountant Waldo Zhernikov meets with gangster and nightclub owner Harry Foulcher to create a new crime syndicate. Waldo suggests that Harry recruit the five most prolific mobsters from the West End and create a syndicate with Harry as a boss. Every member of the syndicate would still control his usual territory and they would all evenly divide the profits, after paying Waldo his customary 20 per cent fee. During a meeting, they all agree to the plan. Their racket is the protection business. They force many small merchants and business owners to pay a monthly protection fee. Most victims comply out of fear. Those who refuse, are intimidated, beaten or have their businesses vandalized by hired thugs. The police does what it can to stop these acts but the resources and manpower are stretched to the limit. Detective Inspector Sayers is in charge of the West End rackets investigation. But witnesses are afraid to talk to the police. The crime syndicate had... Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The crossfire of gangland terror turns THE FRIGHTENED CITY into a mob jungle! See more »


Crime | Drama


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Did You Know?


The Shadows took the opening theme to number three on the U.K. charts. See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening title sequence, when actors and crew are listed, many of the names are displayed one by one on successive beats of The Shadows' famous title music. See more »


Featured in Sean Connery: A BAFTA Tribute (1990) See more »


The Frightened City
(instrumental) (opening titles) (uncredited)
Music by Norrie Paramor
Performed by Studio Orchestra
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User Reviews

A pretty cool attempt at Brit Noir. Connery is terrific, Lom even better.
5 April 2004 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

'The Frightened City' is an interesting crime drama set in a pre-Beatles England featuring a strong performance from Sean Connery, the year before he became a movie legend as James Bond. Connery plays Paddy Damion a thief who is recruited by a mobster (Alfred Marks) to oversee his money collection. Paddy is no thug but takes the job because his partner (Kenneth Griffith) has been injured in a robbery and he feels obligated to support him. Marks is actually the puppet of criminal mastermind Zhernikov (Herbert Lom), who has the image of a respectable businessman, but is in fact manipulating the local mobsters for his own ends. Add to this mix the beautiful Anya (Yvonne Romain), wanna be singer and Zhernikov's mistress, who Paddy immediately takes a shine to, and Sayers (John Gregson) the dedicated cop trying to crack open organized crime and you've got yourself a pretty cool attempt at Brit Noir. Connery is terrific, Lom even better and I enjoyed seeing Kenneth Griffith and Yvonne Romain again after their supporting roles in the classic shocker 'Circus Of Horrors' starring Anton Diffring. 'The Frightened City' is worth a look.

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Release Date:

20 July 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Frightened City See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Zodiac Productions See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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