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Mark of the Tortoise (1964)

Wartezimmer zum Jenseits (original title)
The nephew of a murdered millionaire decides to track down his uncle's killer. He faces many life-threatening dangers as he tries to break into the inner circle of the sinister criminal "The Tortoise."

Director:

Alfred Vohrer
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Cast

Credited cast:
Hildegard Knef ... Lorelli
Götz George ... Donald 'Don' Micklem
Richard Münch Richard Münch ... Mario Orlandi di Alsconi
Heinz Reincke ... Inspektor Dickes
Carl Lange ... Crantor
Pinkas Braun ... Felix
Adelheid Seeck Adelheid Seeck ... Lady Helen Bradley
Hans Paetsch ... Sir Cyrus Bradley
Jan Hendriks ... Carlos
Joachim Rake Joachim Rake ... Butler Dixon
Klaus Kinski ... Shapiro
Hans Clarin ... Harry Mason
Frank Straass Frank Straass ... Giacopo
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Rudolf Fenner Rudolf Fenner
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Storyline

The nephew of a murdered millionaire decides to track down his uncle's killer. He faces many life-threatening dangers as he tries to break into the inner circle of the sinister criminal "The Tortoise."

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Action | Thriller

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Details

Country:

West Germany

Language:

German

Release Date:

April 1964 (Austria) See more »

Also Known As:

Mark of the Tortoise See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

DEM1,400,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Connections

References The Prize (1963) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A little different, but not very good
10 February 2009 | by The_VoidSee all my reviews

The Mark of the Tortoise is not, as is the case with most of the rest of the genre, based on a book by the great Edgar Wallace (or his son Bryan) and instead takes its plot from a novel by crime writer James Hadley Chase. Alfred Vohrer once again takes the director's reigns but unfortunately the end result is a film that is simply not as good as many other genre offerings. The main thing I like about this genre is the style and the wayward/ridiculous plot occurrences; and this one is lacking in both areas, which leaves it feeling rather plain and bland. The plot focuses on a young man whose uncle is a rich man. The uncle has fallen under the threat of blackmail and the nephew endeavours to get to the bottom of it. It turns out the gang of blackmailers is being lead by a crippled mastermind who, due to loss of the use of his legs, finds his only pleasure in life is derived from extorting money from rich people.

One benefit of the film being fairly simple is that it's easy to follow and this allows the director to focus more on the characters and their situations rather than getting wrapped up in various plot points. It's the antagonists that are most interesting; with the crippled mastermind in particular being the most fleshed out character, and he gets support from his scarred assistant and his beautiful mistress who may or may not be entirely loyal to him. The film really lacks in suspense and mostly just relies on its plot to deliver the thrills and this doesn't always happen. The film rather lacks atmosphere and a lot of it takes place in the daytime too, which doesn't really help a lot. It does at least feature the crisp black and white picture that is seen in most of the early Krimi films. There's one moment of suspense towards the end in which some characters are trapped inside a room and that leads into the ending which is not entirely typical or expected; but isn't all that good either. This is a little different from most Krimi films, but I wouldn't list it among the best of the genre.


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