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Published on Apr 23, 2011
For SOME strange reason YouTube have blocked the viewing of this in Germany
Director: Michael Anderson Stars: George Segal, Alec Guinness, Max Von Sydow, Senta Berga, George Sanders, Robert Helpmann, Robert Flemyng Genre: Drama, Action Rating: 0 Votes Review: A British agent is murdered in Berlin. Quiller takes over his assignment -- to find an underground Nazi organization. He encounters Inge, a young school teacher with whom he falls in love. He is captured by Oktober, the Nazi leader, and the two men begin a game of cat and mouse, each trying to discover the other's base...
The producers would have seen The Quiller Memorandum as a routine film. Made by jobbing director Michael Anderson from Adam Hall's bestseller The Berlin Memorandum, it features an international cast and a European setting -- all perfect for the mid sixties spy craze. It's even trendily downbeat like The Ipcress File or The Spy Who Came In From the Cold.
Then someone hired Harold Pinter to do the screenplay.
Pinter takes Hall's plot and strips it to the bone. The novel is a realistic account of a British agent hunting Nazis in Cold War Berlin. The film though seems strangely timeless. The action takes place in a city called Berlin but we never see the Wall, Checkpoint Charlie or a single East German soldier. Quiller (an American in the film but it scarcely seems to matter) is still hunting Nazis and they are just as ruthless as their counterparts in the book. But we see none of the traditional Nazi symbols -- no swastikas or pictures of Hitler. The villain Oktober describes himself as "a German gentleman" and his men could blend in anywhere. The very ordinariness of the film's settings -- Quiller's investigations lead him through bars, a bowling alley, a swimming pool, a school -- show that fear can lurk all around us. This could be our city, our world. As Quiller's controller Pol says, today the Nazis "look like everybody else".........