Alice Dryden (huskyteer) wrote,
Alice Dryden

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Top Secret

Last week I received an excited email from several_bees entitled 'Spies!'. In it was word of The Celluloid Curtain, a festival celebrating European spy movies from both sides of the Cold War.

I was away over the weekend so missed the bulk of the action at Riverside Studios, but we arranged a clandestine meeting to catch the very last item on the programme, Streng Geheim / For Eyes Only.

The film, in black-and-white, took a little getting into because of the large cast and the subtitles. Once we'd worked out that our hero, being a double agent, had two grey-haired, middle-aged bosses rather than one, everything became a lot easier.

Hansen is trusted and respected by his American fellow-agents, but secretly he's still working for the East. Big trouble is brewing and he needs to get hold of the proof and bring it safely home to his real masters. Along the way he'll drive a lot of cars, visit a lot of nightclubs and run rings around his comically degenerate or downright evil superiors.

It ends with a car chase pursued by a helicopter towards the border and safety, a montage of newspaper headlines from around the world (of the sort that Airplane! spoofed so well), and Hansen saving the world from itself before going off to make peace with his estranged son. Hurrah!

The studio café was hosting an exhibition of original spy film posters from all over Europe, some gloriously kitschy, some artistically brilliant, and surprisingly many for films starring Daniela Bianchi and/or Peter van Eyck. If there had been postcards on sale I'd have bought the complete set.

You can see them all, and many more, at The Kiss Kiss Kill Kill Archive.
Tags: films, spies

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