6.0/10
4,237
74 user 39 critic

Billion Dollar Brain (1967)

Not Rated | | Crime, Thriller | 14 January 1968 (UK)
A former British spy stumbles onto a plot to overthrow Communism with the help of a supercomputer. But who is working for whom?

Director:

Ken Russell

Writers:

Len Deighton (novel), John McGrath (screenplay)
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A British Agent is sent to East Berlin to receive a Communist defector, but the true situation turns out to be rather more complicated.

Director: Guy Hamilton
Stars: Michael Caine, Oskar Homolka, Paul Hubschmid
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In London, a counter espionage Agent deals with his own bureaucracy while investigating the kidnapping and brainwashing of British scientists.

Director: Sidney J. Furie
Stars: Michael Caine, Nigel Green, Guy Doleman
Bullet to Beijing (TV Movie 1995)
Action | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A retired British spy is called back into service by his government to help prevent North Korea from getting its hands on a deadly virus called "The Red Death".

Director: George Mihalka
Stars: Anatoly Kulbitsky, Shaughan Seymour, Michael Caine
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  

Former British secret agent Harry Palmer now runs a Private Investigation company in Russia. He gets a job to locate and recover a consignment of stolen plutonium, and with the help of ... See full summary »

Director: Douglas Jackson
Stars: Michael Caine, Jason Connery, Yuri Limonty
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

John Preston is a British Agent with the task of preventing the Russians detonating a nuclear explosion next to an American base in the UK. The Russians are hoping this will shatter the "special relationship" between the two countries.

Director: John Mackenzie
Stars: Michael Caine, Pierce Brosnan, Ned Beatty
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A British Agent's son is kidnapped and held for ransom.

Director: Don Siegel
Stars: Michael Caine, Donald Pleasence, Delphine Seyrig
Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A war veteran tries to investigate the murder of his son who was working as a Russian translator for the British intelligence service during the Cold War. He meets a web of deception and paranoia that seems to be impenetrable.

Director: Simon Langton
Stars: Michael Caine, James Fox, Nigel Havers
Gambit (1966)
Comedy | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

An English cat burglar needs a Eurasian dancer's help to pull off the perfect heist, but even the most foolproof schemes have a way of backfiring.

Director: Ronald Neame
Stars: Shirley MacLaine, Michael Caine, Herbert Lom
Play Dirty (1969)
Adventure | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

During World War II in North Africa, a group of British commandos disguised in Italian soldiers must travel behind enemy lines and destroy a vital Nazi oil depot.

Director: André De Toth
Stars: Michael Caine, Nigel Davenport, Nigel Green
Action | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A reluctant hero, American Lieutenant Sam Lawson, is secunded to a motley British unit tasked with destroying a Japanese radio on a Philippine island.

Director: Robert Aldrich
Stars: Michael Caine, Cliff Robertson, Ian Bannen
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

When a U.S. Intelligence Agent is unable to bring a ruthless drug baron to justice, he resorts to hiring a contract killer. But the man with whom he is put in contact turns out to be an old friend.

Director: Robert Parrish
Stars: Michael Caine, Anthony Quinn, James Mason
Get Carter (1971)
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

When his brother dies under mysterious circumstances in a car accident, London gangster Jack Carter travels to Newcastle to investigate.

Director: Mike Hodges
Stars: Michael Caine, Ian Hendry, Britt Ekland
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Caine ... Harry Palmer
Karl Malden ... Leo Newbigen
Ed Begley ... Gen. Midwinter
Oskar Homolka ... Col. Stok (as Oscar Homolka)
Françoise Dorléac ... Anya (as Francoise Dorleac)
Guy Doleman ... Col. Ross
Vladek Sheybal ... Dr. Eiwort
Milo Sperber Milo Sperber ... Basil
Janos Kurutz Janos Kurutz ... Latvian Gangster
Alexei Jawdokimov Alexei Jawdokimov ... Latvian Gangster
Paul Tamarin Paul Tamarin ... Latvian Gangster
Izabella Telezynska Izabella Telezynska ... Latvian Gangster (as Iza Teller)
Mark Elwes Mark Elwes ... Birkenshaw
Stanley Caine ... G.P.O. Special Delivery Boy
Gregg Palmer Gregg Palmer ... First Dutch Businessman
Edit

Storyline

Harry Palmer has left the British Secret Service and become a private detective. One of his first assignments is to deliver an apparently innocent Thermos flask to an old friend in Helsinki, Palmer is suspicious of the flask contents and begins to doubt the motives of his friend and those of his boss, a Texan billionaire. Written by Dave Jenkins <david.jenkins@smallworld.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Pow . . . Power . . . Brainpower

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Russian | Finnish

Release Date:

14 January 1968 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Con el mundo a sus pies See more »

Filming Locations:

Senaatintori, Helsinki, Finland See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (as De Luxe)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the third Harry Palmer movie, after The Ipcress File (1965) and Funeral in Berlin (1966). Sir Michael Caine had originally signed a five-movie deal, but when he was reluctant to return to the role, Producer Harry Saltzman let him out of the contract. He did make two more Harry Palmer movies: Bullet to Beijing (1995) and Midnight in Saint Petersburg (1996). See more »

Goofs

After being freed from detainment, Harry Palmer attends the end of a symphony concert, which is supposed to feature Dmitri Shostakovich's "Leningrad" Symphony, written in 1941 during the siege of Leningrad by German troops. What we hear, however, is the end of Shostakovich's 11th Symphony "The Year 1905". Yet, music from the "Leningrad" symphony is featured later on during Midwinter's speech to his soldiers in Finland and during the final battle on the ice. See more »

Quotes

Col.Ross: [after spilling a box of Harry's cornflakes on the floor] You get all your equipment from Kellogg's?
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening credits, crew names are written in all uppercase letters, with the exception of Production Manager Eva Monley whose name is written "eva monley". See more »

Alternate Versions

31 seconds of the original movie are missing on the MGM DVD release of 2004. The licensing rights of the Beatles song "A Hard Day's Night", which was heard in the scene where Harry meets Basil, were too expensive so they cut the whole scene. See more »

Connections

Featured in Al Murray's Great British Spy Movies (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Billion Dollar Brain (Main Theme)
Composed and Arranged by Richard Rodney Bennett
Orchestra conducted by Marcus Dods
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Not great, but with some points of interest.
2 November 2003 | by KEVMCSee all my reviews

When ex-agent Harry Palmer recieves a mysterious request to deliver a flask to Finland in return for a fee, Col. Ross forcibly re-employs him with British Intelligence. Palmer is ordered to proceed to Finland with the flask (which contains deadly nerve gas), in an attempt to infiltrate the organisation of Texan oil billionaire Gen. Midwinter, who is believed to be behind an anti-Soviet plot of some kind.

The third and final of the Harry Palmer films (if you don't count the two woeful straight to cable efforts of the mid-nineties) is generally considered to be the weakest. The strength of both 'The Ipcress File' and 'Funeral In Berlin' was that they were the complete antithesis of the Bond films, portraying the spying game as mundane, shadowy and unglamorous. However, with 'Billion Dollar Brain' maverick director Ken Russell presents the audience with an outlandish plot and large futuristic sets, which seem at odds with the style of its predecessors. The result is that the film appears to be aping Bond, and as such the character of Palmer is less effective.

Despite these shortcomings there are pleasures to be had. Michael Caine once again displays wit and charm as Palmer, Guy Doleman is his usual droll self as Ross and Oskar Homolka makes a very welcome return as Col. Stok. Ed Begley gives his all as the lunatic Midwinter, Karl Malden provides reliable support as an old aquaintence of Palmer, and the tragic Francois Dorleac lends an exotic mystery to her character. The snowbound Finnish locations are beautifully filmed and the production design by Bond man Syd Cain is very stylish.

Ultimately the film is let down by rather wild and undisciplined direction and a cartoonish finale. It's a shame that 'Billion Dollar Brain' strayed so far from the template of the previous films, but its by no means all bad, and can be reasonably entertaining if you're in the right mood.


26 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 74 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed