James Stewart stars as a railroad man hired to secretly carry a payroll despite his suspected connections to outlaws
Alex Guinness stars in this sly satire of spy movies and espionage culture itself. Like The Third Man, it's directed by Carol Reed and written by Graham Greene
Having found so much success with his adaptations of Graham Greene novels The Fallen Idol (1948) and The Third Man (1949), Carol Reed revisited the author's oeuvre with this fabulous satirical spy story.
Ex-pat vacuum salesman Jim Wormold (Guinness) is roped into Britain's Cuban espionage division. Paid per item of intelligence, and desperate to send daughter Milly (Morrow) to an expensive European school, Wormold embellishes his reports with daring falsification. But the ruse has uneasy consequences, especially when his activities arouse the suspicions of police chief Captain Segura (Kovacs) suspicion.
Guinness plays his part to perfection, an Everyman paddling furiously against the tide, and excellent support comes from Ralph Richardson (as the obsessive MI6 boss), Burl Ives and Paul Rogers (as rival agent).
But Coward steals the show as his patrician spymaster.
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