The Liquidator (Nov-1965)|
Director: Jack Cardiff
Writer: Peter Yeldham
From novel: The Liquidator by John Gardner
Music Composed and Conducted by: Lalo Schifrin
Producer: Jon Penington
Keywords: Thriller, Espionage
Review by GJH (posted on 9-Mar-2005)
This has always been one of my favorite movies. I always loved James Bond spoofs such as the Derrick Flint and Matt Helm movies, and "The Liquidator" stands above those.
Rod Taylor plays Boysie Oakes, a hapless tank commander at the end of WWII, who accidently saves Colonel Mostyn (Trevor Howard) from two rival spies. Years later, when Britain's spy network is inundated with embarrassing counter-spies, Mostyn remembers Oakes and hires him as "Agent L" (Liquidator) to neatly get rid of these embarrassments. Unable to carry out these liquidations, Oakes hires a private contractor, Griffen (Eric Sykes). Oakes keeps this to himself as he loves the playboy lifestyle that he now lives. Taylor has the unique ability to seem inept at being a spy, while at the same time showing skills above and beyond those around him, and making it all perfectly believable.
The subtle comedy and all of the twists and turns (likely and unlikely) make this a very enjoyable and engrossing film. Jill St. John as Iris is great eye-candy and plays the part to the hilt. Her acting complements Taylor's without upstaging him.
I highly recommend this film and wish it to be released on DVD.
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