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The Odessa File (1974)

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Following the suicide of an elderly Jewish man, a journalist in possession of the man's diary investigates the alleged sighting of a former S.S. Captain, who commanded a concentration camp during World War II.

Director:

Ronald Neame

Writers:

Frederick Forsyth (based on the novel by), Kenneth Ross (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jon Voight ... Peter Miller
Maximilian Schell ... Eduard Roschmann
Maria Schell ... Frau Miller
Mary Tamm ... Sigi
Derek Jacobi ... Klaus Wenzer
Peter Jeffrey ... David Porath
Klaus Löwitsch ... Gustav Mackensen
Kurt Meisel ... Alfred Oster
Hannes Messemer ... General Glücks
Garfield Morgan ... Israeli General
Shmuel Rodensky ... Simon Wiesenthal (as Schmuel Rodensky)
Ernst Schröder Ernst Schröder ... Werner Deilman
Günter Strack Günter Strack ... Kunik (as Gunter Strack)
Noel Willman ... Franz Bayer
Martin Brandt ... Marx
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Storyline

After reading the diary of an elderly Jewish man who committed suicide, freelance journalist Peter Miller begins to investigate the alleged sighting of a former S.S. Captain who commanded a concentration camp during World War II. Miller eventually finds himself involved with the powerful organization of former S.S. members, called "O.D.E.S.S.A.", as well as with the Israeli secret service. Miller probes deeper and eventually discovers a link between the S.S. Captain, "O.D.E.S.S.A.", and his own family. Written by Anthony Hughes <husnock31@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

From the Smash Suspense Novel of the Year....."THE ODESSA FILE" See more »

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | West Germany

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

18 October 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Akta Odessy See more »

Filming Locations:

Salzburg, Austria See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)| Black and White (flashback scenes)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Hannes Messemer (General Glücks) had served in the Wermacht during World War II. See more »

Goofs

The automobiles driving down the street outside the elderly-pension office (around the 25 minute point) are clearly the type of cars typical of the mid-1970's, even though the scene was set in November or December 1963. See more »

Quotes

Peter Miller: [in disgust, to Roschmann] You are not even worth a bullet!
See more »

Alternate Versions

West German TV version was edited to remove the text at the beginning (which provides background information) and flashback scenes of Roschmann's atrocities in the KZ. See more »

Connections

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

Soundtracks

Schwarzbraun ist die Haselnuss
("Black Brown is the hazelnut") (uncredited)
Tradtional
[Sung at the soldiers' reunion]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
engrossing, suspenseful drama
25 July 2005 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Jon Voight does an excellent job in this intriguing film about a reporter searching for a war criminal who escaped Germany after World War II with the help of an organization called Odessa. His investigation leads him to Simon Wiesenthal and to a group of Israelis who train him to infiltrate Odessa. The historical setting is 1963 Germany, at the time of the Kennedy assassination This is a very suspenseful film with wonderful performances from the supporting cast as well: Mary Tamm, Maximillian Schell, Maria Schell, and Derek Jacoby.

For me, The Odessa File has always had an old-fashioned feeling to it -it was made in 1974, set in 1963, and almost seems like it could have been made in the '40s. Truly an excellent film.

As a bit of trivia no doubt already mentioned, Andrew Lloyd Webber wrote the music for the film, which I frankly found rather intrusive.


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