Thursday, April 23, 2015

Journey Into Fear (1943)

Director: Norman Foster, Orson Welles

Writers: Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Eric Ambler, Richard Collins, Ben Hecht

Composer: Roy Webb

Starring: Joseph Cotten, Dolores del Rio, Ruth Warrick, Agnes Moorehead, Jack Durant, Everett Sloane, Eustace Wyatt, Frank Readick, Edgar Barrier, Jack Moss, Stefan Scnabel, Hans Conried, Robert Meltzer, Richard Bennett, Orson Welles

More info: IMDb

Tagline: Welles and Del Rio together! as Terror Man vs. Leopard Woman--for possession of a mysterious stranger in the powder-keg Middle East...a man with a military secret worth more than his love and his life!...It's menace melodrama thrilled with mighty mystery and suspense...SEE IT!

Plot: A Navy engineer returning to the U.S. with his wife from a conference finds himself pursued by Nazi agents who are out to kill him. Without a word to his wife, he flees the hotel the couple is staying in and boards a ship only to find, after the ship sails, that the agents have followed him.

My rating: 6.5/10

Will I watch it again? No.

Hmmmm.  It's not a bad film by any means but it's not really all that great.  It's missing something or a lot of somethings.  It starts off with a bang and moves at a nice clip.  It's fun watching Howard (Cotten) get whisked away from his wife and somehow end up on a ship without his getting a word out to his wife where he is.  I can see how easily it can happen and it was fun seeing Howard get the runaround.  We can clearly see what's happening but he's in the middle of it and he's barely has time to make sense of it all.  Orson Welles is in it a little and he's a load of fun to watch.  What's weird is that there should have been more to the story.  It's only 68 minutes long which works to a degree but it would have been nice to stick around longer.  Maybe the studio forced the time limit.  Maybe there was more to tell but the film makers were restricted.  Beats me. I'm certainly happy to have seen it now but it's not something I'll be revisiting.  There are far too many other film noirs and thrillers from the forties that I haven't gotten to yet. 

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