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espionage

The Stranger

Director: Orson Welles
Country/ Year: USA 1946



Loretta Young’s unsuspecting wife is closer too the enemy than she imagines. Much closer than Edward G. Robinson’s title figure, who peaks behind the small town facade and that of her husband.

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Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon

Director: Roy William Neill
Country/ Year: USA 1943



Arthur Conan Doyle would have marveled at his detective donning a nazi uniform; of course, only as ploy to protect the titular McGuffin. Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce and Lionell Atwill shine out.

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British Intelligence

Director: Terry O.Morse
Country/ Year: USA 1940



Nationalities, identities and loyalties change hasty among Boris Karloff and the others protagonists of the decent spy flick, that takes the infiltration of the home as metaphor for that of the country.

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Killers from Space

Director: W. Lee Wilder
Country/ Year: USA 1954



Evidently less talented in the cinematic field, Billy Wilder’s brother W. Lee tied a string of mostly lubberly b-movies such as this paranoid sci-fi story about alien spies and their earthly allies.

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The Man Who Knew Too Much (1934)

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Country/ Year: UK 1934



22 years senior to the classic US remake, Hitchcock’s clever spy story evokes a rather different feel of ruthlessness, cunning and cynism. German expatriate Peter Lorre learned his lines phonetically.

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Creature from the Haunted Sea

Director: Roger Corman
Country/ Year: USA 1961



The feeble farce has cuban counterrevolutionaries take off with the national treasure. Their loyalist longings stir them into the clutches of scheming gang leader Capeto, the CIA and – the Creature!

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Black Dragons

Director: William Nigh
Country/ Year: USA 1942



US ministers are found on the stairs of the japanese embassy, US business moguls are nowhere to be found and both are dead! Bela Lugosi’s hypnotizing stare and the auspicious time of action spell YELLOW PERIL to those, who yet don’t know the titular crime club from „Let’s get tough!“.

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The Lady Vanishes

Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Country/ Year: UK 1938



Nice old ladies making acquaintances during overlong train journeys can be disruptive. Even more so if they suddenly disappear like the companion of Margaret Lockwood. Michael Redgrave’s mocking musicologist and a host of accomplished actors are right in tune with Hitch’s odd humor.

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