Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Assassination Bureau (1969)

Director: Basil Dearden

Starring: Oliver Reed, Diana Rigg, Telly Savalas, Curd Jurgens

More Info: IMDB

Tagline: Zeppelins. Bombs. Bordellos. Burials. You name it. We have it.

Plot: For her first assignment a lady journalist tracks down the head of an organisation offering to kill, for money, people deserving of such a fate. She thinks herself very clever when he agrees to take a contract with himself as the target. What she doesn't know is that her paper's owner is second-in-command in the Bureau and has his own reasons for supporting her challenge.

My Rating: 5/10

Would I watch it again? Absolutely not!

This is one of those late 60s excesses that's trying to be "too cute for school" and playful while giving you some semblance of an action thriller. It's definitely a product of the late 60s silly pure and simple. Reed and Rigg are clearly having a wonderfully time (a lot more than I did and they got paid); Reed doing his rogue-ish best and Rigg being so teasingly sexy that it's not fair for the rest of the female sex to have to compete with her (EXACTLY like she did in THE AVENGERS). It's one of those 60s everything-and-the-kitchen-sink comedies it tried so hard at being at the close of the decade.

I thought, given the cast, it would be better but it boils down to a playful romp, cat & mouse, let's try to get Oliver Reed and fail amusingly by the numbers kind of film. It looks good but it just lays there flat and we're stuck watching it die for nearly two hours. It's cute at best and if I'm going to sit through an hour and fifty minute movie I need more than just cute. I need Diana Rigg to at least take her top off. But seriously, folks...

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