Saturday, June 9, 2018

Ministry of Fear (1944)

Director: Fritz Lang

Writers: Seton I. Miller, Graham Greene

Composer: Victor Young

Starring: Ray Milland, Marjorie Reynolds, Carl Esmond, Hillary Brooke, Percy Waram, Dan Duryea, Alan Napier, Erskine Sanford

More info: IMDb

Plot:  Stephen Neale has just been released from an asylum during World War 2 in England when he stumbles on a deadly Nazi spy plot by accident, and tries to stop it.

My rating: 7.5/10

Will I watch it again?  Yes.

There's at least one thing you can count on with Fritz Lang and that's a quality product.  I'd say the same thing for Ray Milland.  He's always delivering the goods no matter how bad the picture might be.  Once Stephen is cut loose from the asylum into the war-torn world, things get interesting to say the least.  The fair scene where he sees the "psychic" and gets the cake is where the intrigue starts and it doesn't let go until the all too happy tag at the end which brings the cake back into it.  That joke was awful and it had no place in the picture.  It should've ended just before that and with ominous music.  Anyway, the acting is very good as is everything else.  It's a smaller spy intrigue picture but it works wonderfully well.  Lang does a great job delivering the suspense.  He's so good at it that I would love to see how much different this would've been if Hitchcock had directed it.  It's the kind of picture that he would've done anyway.  My only minor gripe is the lack of outdoor filming.  Everything is filmed on a set including the outdoor shots.  Being outside for a little while here and there would've added something welcome.

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