Sunday, December 10, 2006

The Great Escape 2

Hitch Part 12 0f 15

Torn Curtin is the first film in the Hitchcock set that I had not previously seen, the same will hold true for all following entries in this series. The plot concerns an American physicist (Paul Newman), who fakes a defection to East Germany, in an effort to steal a nuclear formula from a famous scientist there (Ludwig Donath). Newmans fellow physicist and girlfriend Sarah Sherman (Julie Andrews) gets mixed up in events, thinking at first that Armstrong (that's Newmans character) is really defecting. In short order events in East Germany make it imparitive that the couple try to escape the nation, which they do with the help of a resitance smuggling service called Pie (that's the mathamatical pie, not the kind that comes in cherry).

The procedings are all very excitting, even if this is not the best work Hitch has done. There's nothing wrong with the film, in fact its quite good, it just not (as many of its contemporary critices complianed) North by Northwest or Sabatour. Long standing rumor is that Hitchcock was not happy with either of his leads, both forced upon him by the studio, and that the script had not been completed to his satisfaction by the time shooting began. Never-the-less I still find this movie worth recommending, great cold war stuff treated more realisticly then most spy films of the period. In fact that leads to the truely memorable scene in the film, when Newman and an agent of Pie (Carolyn Conwell) must kill an East German agent who has discoverd the insincerity of Armstrongs suposed defection. Let's just say that the theme of the scene is that 'murder is hard', as the pair must strangle, stabe, bludgen, and gas the communist before they succed in dispatching him. It reminded me of some of the Coen Brothers more bloody moments, which alone should be enough to make the reader curious about the film.


Post a Comment

<< Home