The Debt

The Debt

John Madden (2010)

15 Certificate


Our Score
A decent but unspectacular war crimes tale is elevated above the ordinary here by the sheer calibre of its cast - including Helen Mirren, Sam Worthington, Tom Wilkinson and then rising star Jessica Chastain. In 1965, three members of Mossad, the Israeli secret service, are sent in to East Berlin to kidnap or kill a notorious Nazi war criminal, the infamous "Surgeon of Birkenau". But the mission is botched. Thirty years later, the trio, now retired and fêted back home as heroes, get a surprise chance to make amends. As it flits back and forth in time between botch-up and mop-up, the film exposes a curiosity of casting. No way would the actors who play two of the young agents grow up to look anything like the actors who play them in middle age. That distraction aside, the movie was an entertaining addition to the Noughties wave of retro spy films.


Three Mossad agents are declared heroes in 1965 for apparently killing a notorious Nazi war criminal. Nearly 30 years later, they receive shocking news, as the secrets that were buried during the assignment come back to haunt them. Thriller, starring Helen Mirren. Tom Wilkinson, Ciaran Hinds, Jessica Chastain, Marton Csokas and Sam Worthington.

Cast & Crew

Rachel Singer Helen Mirren
Young David Sam Worthington
Young Rachel Singer Jessica Chastain
Stephan Gold Tom Wilkinson
Doktor Bernhardt / Dieter Vogel Jesper Christensen
Young Stephan Marton Csokas
David Peretz Ciaran Hinds
Sarah Gold Romi Aboulafia
Director John Madden
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: UniversalGuidance: Violence, swearing. Available on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 30 Sep 2011