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Torn Curtain (1966)

PG | | Thriller | 27 July 1966 (USA)
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An American scientist publicly defects to East Germany as part of a cloak and dagger mission to find the solution for a formula resin before planning an escape back to the West.

Director:

Alfred Hitchcock

Writer:

Brian Moore
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Paul Newman ... Professor Michael Armstrong
Julie Andrews ... Sarah Sherman
Lila Kedrova ... Countess Kuchinska
Hansjörg Felmy ... Heinrich Gerhard (as Hansjoerg Felmy)
Tamara Toumanova ... Ballerina
Ludwig Donath ... Professor Gustav Lindt
Wolfgang Kieling ... Hermann Gromek
Günter Strack Günter Strack ... Professor Karl Manfred
David Opatoshu ... Mr. Jacobi
Gisela Fischer Gisela Fischer ... Dr. Koska
Mort Mills ... Farmer
Carolyn Conwell Carolyn Conwell ... Farmer's Wife
Arthur Gould-Porter Arthur Gould-Porter ... Freddy - the Bookseller
Gloria Govrin Gloria Govrin ... Fräulein Mann (as Gloria Gorvin)
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Storyline

Professor Michael Armstrong is heading to Copenhagen, Denmark to attend a physics conference accompanied by his assistant and fiancée Sarah Sherman. Once arrived however, Michael informs her that he may be staying for awhile and she should return home. She follows him and realizes he's actually heading to East Germany, behind the Iron Curtain. She follows him there and is shocked when he announces that he's defecting to the East after the U.S. government cancelled his research project. In fact, Michael is there to obtain information from a renowned East German scientist. Once the information is obtained, he and Sarah now have to make their way back to the West. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It tears you apart with suspense! See more »

Genres:

Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German | Swedish | Norwegian

Release Date:

27 July 1966 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cortina rasgada See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$13,000,000, 31 December 1966
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In a Norman Lloyd and Steve Smith 1996 Interview, Lloyd revealed that he was there during the break-up of the Sir Alfred Hitchcock and Bernard Herrmann partnership. Lloyd said that there was great pressure on Hitchcock not to hire Bernard Herrmann. That pressure came from the front office at Universal Pictures, most notably from its Music Department. The reason given was that Herrmann couldn't write a hit song. Universal Pictures was talking about getting Henry Mancini, but Hitchcock decided to go with Herrmann, but because of the pressure he was getting from Universal Pictures, he laid very specifically to Herrmann what he wanted in the score. Herrmann wrote the score after receiving this directive. When Hitchcock heard the score, he said, in effect, "I don't want to hear another note. This is not what I asked for in the cable. This is a complete violation of my requests." He walked off the stage, had the orchestra dismissed, cancelled the next day, and never heard another note of the score. Herrmann tried to get to see Hitchcock, but Hitchcock wouldn't see him. He felt that Herrmann had deliberately ignored his directive. Lloyd went on to say, "Hitch took the violation as a personal insult, because he had been so careful to lay out his instructions. Then you must also realize that he had hired Benny over the objections of the front office. So the whole situation contributed to Hitch's feeling that Benny had betrayed him." See more »

Goofs

Or their shadow, anyway. On the road-level shot of Armstrong's taxi leaving the farm (Gromek's motorbike is visible on the left of the screen), just at the very bottom of the image can be seen the shadow of the camera (4:3 television version only). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Professor Karl Manfred: Are they ever going to get the heating fixed?
Norwegian crewman: They are working at it, Professor. Perhaps some of you scientists would like to give us a helping hand!
See more »

Alternate Versions

In the original version, various German dialogues are translated to English (i.e. at the airport). In the German version, these translations were removed. Additionally, letters written in English were replaced with letters written in German. See more »

Connections

Featured in Hitchcock/Truffaut (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Torn Curtain (Main Title)
Written by John Addison
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Very good, but not a Hitchcock masterpiece
17 June 2000 | by jhaggardjrSee all my reviews

"Torn Curtain" is an exceptional Alfred Hitchcock film that is for the most part intriguing, suspenseful, and entertaining. But it's not a masterpiece. Paul Newman stars as an American scientist who appears to be defecting to Germany. Julie Andrews, coming off her Oscar-winning film debut in "Mary Poppins" and her Oscar-nominated role in "The Sound of Music", plays Newman's associate and girlfriend who tags along for the ride. Along the way they run into an assorted bunch of odd but colorful supporting characters. "Torn Curtain" isn't as good as "Psycho", "The Birds" and "North by Northwest", but that doesn't make this a bad movie. Even though the movie moves a little slow at times, it's still an interesting and sometimes funny movie, well acted by Newman and Andrews.

*** (out of four)


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