The Odessa File

The Odessa File

Ronald Neame (1974)

123min
PG Certificate
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Review

Our Score
A terrific Frederick Forsyth plot and impressive production values make this thriller eminently watchable, even if veteran director Ronald Neame lets the pace drag and the length feels excessive. The often undervalued Jon Voight gives a superb performance as the journalist tracking down a concentration camp commandant, his quest hindered at every turn by members of the sinister Odessa organisation. There are several splendid moments, notably a nasty grilling of Voight by slimy Noel Willman, but Derek Jacobi is wasted and female lead Mary Tamm is inadequate, while Maximilian Schell is far too sympathetic for the villain. One expects a little more from a screenplay co-written by former intelligence expert George Markstein, who was also the script editor for the cult TV series The Prisoner.

Summary

The detailed diaries of a former inmate of a concentration camp fall into the hands of an investigative journalist. Incensed by what he reads, he embarks on a crusade to discover the prison commandant's new identity and expose his crimes to the world. In the process, the trail leads him to a secret organisation that helped Nazi SS officers escape justice. Thriller, based on Frederick Forsyth's novel, starring Jon Voight, Derek Jacobi and siblings Maria and Maximilian Schell.

Cast & Crew

Peter Miller Jon Voight
Eduard Roschmann Maximilian Schell
Klaus Wenzer Derek Jacobi
Frau Miller Maria Schell
Sigi Mary Tamm
David Porath Peter Jeffrey
Gustav Mackensen Klaus Lowitsch
Alfred Oster Kurt Meisel
Director Ronald Neame
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourGuidance: Violence.Available on: video and DVD
Drama