6.0/10
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18 user 8 critic

The Looking Glass War (1970)

From the John le Carré novel about a British spy, who sends a Polish defector to East Germany, to verify missile sites.

Director:

Frank Pierson (as Frank R. Pierson)

Writers:

John le Carré (novel), Frank Pierson (written for the screen by) (as Frank R. Pierson)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Christopher Jones ... Leiser
Pia Degermark ... The Girl
Ralph Richardson ... LeClerc
Paul Rogers ... Haldane
Anthony Hopkins ... John Avery
Susan George ... The Girl in London
Ray McAnally ... Undersecretary of State
Robert Urquhart ... Johnson
Anna Massey ... Avery's Wife
Vivian Pickles ... Mrs. King
Maxine Audley ... Mrs. LeClerc
Cyril Shaps ... East German Detective
Michael Robbins ... Truck Driver
Timothy West ... Taylor
Frederick Jaeger ... The Pilot
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Storyline

During the Cold War, the British Intelligence receives a blurred photograph from East Germany taken from Hamburg and Director LeClerc believes they are missiles. Their agent, Taylor King, who receives a film which might clarify the detail from a pilot in Finland, is found dead on the road, and the police believe he was accidentally killed in a hit-and-run. LeClerc meets the Polish defector Fred Leiser, who jumped overboard from a ship expecting to have asylum and stay with his British girlfriend who is pregnant, and decides to recruit him to cross the border and spy on the Eat German facility to check on the missiles. In return, he would have salary, insurance and political asylum. Leiser is trained by the agent and family man John Avery,and soon he finds his girlfriend has had ended the pregnancy. When Leiser crosses the border, he meets up with Anna, a local, and they stay together in the beginning of a dangerous journey where he is just a pawn in a war game. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"Why do we listen to them? Why do we fight their wars for them?" See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

M | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

8 February 1970 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

A Guerra no Espelho See more »

Filming Locations:

Spain See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Black and White | Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

According to "Variety", this movie is based on the John le Carré novel about Cold War espionage. See more »

Goofs

After Lieser slaps his girlfriend, he walks out of the room leaving the door open and the girl just stays still on the bed. When Avery goes to check if the girl is alright, the door is closed (so he knocks to get in) and the girl was in the same position she was before. See more »

Quotes

John Avery: [attacking Lieser from behind] Never trust anybody.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Ring (2002) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Disappointing adaptation of a good book
8 November 2017 | by MarlburianSee all my reviews

A disappointing adaptation of a good book, with a key aspect of the latter (inter-departmental rivalry) being omitted. I located an on-line copy after the usual frustrations of working through links to Youtube that led to short clips, paid subscription copies and so on.

With several jumps in the plot, I did wonder if the version I saw had been hacked around, but it was the 108 minutes stated here on IMDb. Christopher Jones was unconvincing and uninspiring as Leiser, his fight with Avery a prolonged interpolation and his scrabbling around to get under the wire in the dark protracted. And how lucky he was to come across an attractive girl and child (what happened to him?) in the middle of nowhere - and to bump into her again in a cafe.

The best things were the wide, open European spaces and Anthony Hopkins' acting


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