007. The Ipcress File (1965)
Hello and welcome to spy Hotspur podcast for the next hour, your hosts will go deep undercover into the world of spy movies to decipher which films make the NOC list. But remember this information is strictly for your is only I'm agent Scott and I'm cam the provocateur or are they come? What are we looking at this week? We are going to have a look at the nineteen, sixty, five spy thriller, the HIP Chris File. Starring Michael, Caine, and directed by Sidney J fury. Now, while my favorite things to do if a week is to reaching the synopsis from Fox Dot Com. Joins us. Now how how long? I could see this one being super convoluted but. I'M GONNA. Guess because it's an older movie, it's like half a sentence. Well Yourself Down Prepare Because Harry days the HIP Chris File. Spy Story of the century sly and dry intelligence agent. Harry. Palmer is tasked with investigating British intelligence security, which is soon enmeshed in a world of double dealing, kidnap and murder when he finds a traitor eating at the heart of the secret service. Wow, that's it. I'm especially impressed with the use of sly and dry as a description of that character. I was just looking at the what in matched him. I don't even have actually said that would allow before. I I'm kind of stunned. They didn't use the term trickster as they did in the movie which made me laugh. Yeah I. I do like the concise. Brevity clarity. Straight to. The point. When I think of the word trickster though I think of Loki from the door movies I don't think Michael Caine and the nurse file. No he doesn't really strike me as the kind of guy to walk around with a giant sceptre the. stolen Zoe's crown. On weekends just not duty hey, they're all sequels not haven't seen them. So maybe he does that'd be amazing by the time we get two billion dollar Brady's walk into the Cape and a horned helmet. Just mind controlling people exactly. This took a ton. took a ton. But I'm along for the ride. Now. We can't stop so I. IF I remember correctly is this your first time seeing this film? It is indeed. Yeah. So what we are initial thoughts. I was really excited about tackling this franchise because when we started spy hearts, obviously a big part of the appeal for me was getting to talk about movies like by North West or revisit stuff like the Bourne identity which I washed Washington forever But I also looking forward to new discoveries and the Chris File. I'd heard a lot about and I was very aware of the Harry Palmer character mostly because a few years ago I don't meet his ten years ago who knows Time just flies by nowadays but Michael Cain started a movie called Harry Brown, which was a bout, a former intelligence operative who gets involved in light kind of a personal drama, and there was a lot of references in reviews for Harry Brown about Harry Palmer, and so I suddenly began to realize that this was a thing but I never saw the Harry Potter movies. So excited dive in and I say office I, one I'm super in like I thought this movie was really cool. Okay. I actually. I'm on the other side of that again I. Well, I hadn't seen it. So this was my first entry to I didn't know much about this film a tool I've never really heard of it. I'm not really familiar with Michael Caines. Works. Maybe the Italian job or Something like that. But I wasn't a big fan of this film off to watching it interesting. Yeah. I mean I'm with you on the early Michael Cain I'd seen the Italian job and a teen Alfie but not a lot else a one of them are super available here in North America the way they are maybe over there. Yeah. You tend to find things like Italian job. The Alfie tends to get on daytime television here right just just because it's been around so long that just British staple films right now that's interesting though that we've got a little bit of a disagreement I think the first real time on the podcast I'm down. Yeah it's the first one. I've actually been a bit sour on. Just what chain right but before we get into sort of more in depth, look into my thoughts and your thoughts, can you give me any background on the film? Yes. So this movie was a special project by Harry Saltzman. Harry Saltzman is one of the producers of the bond franchise was him and Cubby Broccoli that launch Dr no in Harry. Saltzman saw this as the antibody franchise something he could create that would take away under the trappings of James Bond the glorified settings Over, the top action, the cartoonish characters and really strip it down to lean mean espionage tales, and so would he decided to get this going you recruited a lot of the people from the bond franchise he brought in editor Peter r hunt who edited Goldfinger thunderball a lot of the early bonds he also directed on Her Majesty's Secret Service he also production designer came Adam who did you only live twice in thunderball a lot of big big bond movies where they have these enormous sets The did the submarine lair in the spy who loved me they also brought over art director, Peter Merton who worked on thunderball and Goldfinger and would go on to work on the man with the Golden Gun, and of course, Jon Berry came on to do the music John Barry decided James Bond Utilized Guitar. So Harry Palmer I'm GONNA use the symbolism no Scott Dino with the symbolism is now for those that don't know hi, I'm a bit of a multi instrumentalist play a lot of instruments by have no idea what that is. Yeah I don't think the symbolism has held up to the Modern Day I. Don't think you're hearing Taylor swift play the symbol on her albums. Okay. It's basically. A boy, it's tough for me to explain but it's sort of like a box. I think it's really a trapezoid maybe but it's like a box with light strings inside of the box right and is it played like a like a hop? I think. So yeah, I don't think you could hold. You could not hold this box in your arms I, think you'd have to have it laying down and pulling the strings like that. So of more like a slide guitar but the plucked. I think. So yeah, that is a strange instruments. So this was that was the my instrument used for this then yeah, and so. This may have been a big deal in the sixties that type of instrument I don't think it's one that has. Really carried onto strongly maybe it's a little bit like the Thurman is the therapist isn't really used a lot nowadays but in the nineteen fifties, they used to let for sci fi movies also I'll have you know old my multi instruments I have different types of fair Minnesota like light. Scott has a PhD therapist. Dr Is I think you'll find. So, Harry Saltzman decided to recruit director Sidney J fury who was actually Canadian director. So we've got some British and Canadian, and this one is the Chris file the second greatest. British Canadian collaboration Scott. Wait what's the first why that would be the hearts podcast? Well I missed that one completely they're not. I don't blame you. I don't think anyone at home not bad either. They're like Oh. Okay. Oh, that right. Fury's interesting because he has a pretty extensive filmography but not a lot of note, I was going through all of his earlier films that try to find some sort of link maybe worked with Michael Cain or something. no, he seems to mostly be a you know workmanlike director who just worked a lot cranked out a lot of movies not a lot better remembered Some things he did do that had a bit of a legacy for better or worse. He did you a movie called the naked runner with Frank Sinatra, which is an espionage movie that I've added to our list. So maybe we'll cover that one day He also did Superman, for the quest for peace the old time. Great. Of course of course, he did the Rodney dangerfield movie lady bugs, which was very popular when I was a kid concept of that one. Okay. And he was also the mastermind behind the iron. Eagle Franchise. He wrote them all and directed Iron Eagle to end for. Details right the same chain I don't know. Any played it on therapy. Exactly, that's what I was leading to. My with no, I'm the delta. With Sidney? J Fury actually was only available to do. This would be because he turned down a hard day's night. Yeah. Hi. Choice putty that phillies great. Yeah so questionable, we jump into the next bit. You mentioned before this is this a cost of bindings bone staff. Where does this full in the bond chronology which ones have come out so far is obvious is meant to be the so anti bond in a ray while they answering just help Abraham because I myself to be sure. Yeah Okay. So they would put out Dr No, and from Russia with love. Goldfinger probably would have been done if not in theaters when they would have been rolling on this one. Okay. So to the stronger sean connery ones have already out in people's minds. So I can say, yes, this would make more sense now as an anti version of that right and this opened the same year as thunderball. So it was sort of a little bit not competition, but they had kind of the dueling Harry Sullivan productions that year understood. Yeah. And so the movie was based on a novel by Len Deighton There was written in nineteen, sixty two or at least published in nineteen, sixty, two, I should say and the writers of the movie were kind of guys who didn't do much of anything One of them is a writer W. H. Calloway who was actually a novelist. He only had like one other credit, which is a movie called a boy ten feet tall starring. Edward. G Robinson otherwise he. Just wrote novels which were basically historical adventures on the other writer was a guy named James Doran who wrote a lot of TV a lot but no other real movies. So by them so of a one time entry into the film World Yeah Basically, and for the actors considered for Harry Palmer Michael Caine was not number one Some of the others considered were Harry H Corbett Ian Bannon. Do you know who those people are Scott because I've never heard those names. I I'm probably letting the rest of the Ritz down on this one but now nowadays people he I feel like they were working actors at the time that just have not crossed over didn't really get big break. So I'm not familiar with either of them but the other two that were up for the role where Richard Harris and Christopher plummer Christopher plummer was the number one pick they wanted. Now that name I know Yeah Christopher plummer chose the sound of music instead another wise choice. Well, that wasn't wise choice waterfall was not. Michael. Cain ultimately got the role because of his work in Zulu but at this point Michael Cain wasn't a big name. This was the movie that actually launched him. That was going to be my question I waited this full in the chronology of Michael Caines work. So I write a Zulu. That makes sense. Yeah and Michael Caine at a quote about Harry Palmer he said James. Bond is Clark Kent. After he says, Chef Zam, he is superman real spies are Clark. Kent. All the time. So you get a sense of what they were going for with this movie. Now is is Michael Cain conflating too stupid harassed or is that actually what Superman used to do? I don't think Michael Caine is a big comic book reader because Yeah he's confusing superman with Suzanne a a captain Marvel Yeah Yeah. That's. That's what I had in my head. Yeah try. So. The production on the movie was a nightmare and Sidney j fury and Harry Saltzman clashed super bad like they was constant fights city Jay fury stormed off the set a couple times and ultimately he was banned from post production and from the CAN festival screening party and he claims Harry Saltzman stole his British Academy. Award. What? That's theft. You just get away with it. So accusing someone of that without proof. I love that fact that maybe laugh. So ours. Okay all right. This is where we saying up my feelings on the film already go you get a sense now why city Jay fury did not direct the sequels that was going to be a question I had was is he tied into the future ones obviously? No, no, he does. So this will be though was massively successful. It played the canned film festival in May of Nineteen Sixty five and was nominated for the palm door, which is the big prize for the festival didn't win but it was dominated. It went on to open theaters and had a budget of seven point, four, million US, and that's adjusted for inflation at the time it was like way less obviously and the box office It did adjusted seventy, two point four and that's domestic. That's not worldwide. That's domestic because as I said, when we did north by northwest, it's very hard to track down worldwide. Box Office numbers for movies and opened before the mid to late seventies because movies opened at such different times internationally versus domestic and someone didn't open for a couple of years and then there was a revival screenings all over the place. So the money just was always getting added, but it's tough to track down actual year for earlier movies. But that was the case seventy, two point four just domestic and they talk about how this movie was like a massive hit over in Britain. So I would guess that it did incredibly well there. It's certainly homeless pumped up. In the background of my life. I've seen it as a seen the cover up before the official but I, I'd never seen it myself but. I didn't realize it was. So popular might be on the to one. Yeah maybe Yeah. They said there was like lions to get into this movie for quite a while and. For when you look at the top three of that year, I've looked I've got the top three domestic, but I am almost positive that this is very representative of what the top three was worldwide from what I've been able to find. So the number one movie was the sound of music which was a Juggernaut. So Christopher, plummer walked out a winner for sure number two was doctor Zhivago another massive hit and number three was thunderball also a massive massive hit and this came in number four No. This was further down the list like if you're looking at the US, it's down at like twenty or something like that like the numbers get very hazy but. I think just it was huge over in Britain and maybe other sections of Europe. Reasonably successful over here like it was a hit for sure and there was no way the was getting sequels, but it wasn't like the biggest hit of the year anything domestically all over North America, like for example, the spy who came in from the cold with Richard Burton did better domestically than than the it was filed did over here so. It gets you a sense. It was definitely a hit. It was definitely popular, but it wasn't like a barn burner of a box office play. I mean my opinions aside seven million budget adjusted for inflation against making seven yards. In just domestic alone. Yeah. That's a tenfold return. That's that's pretty damn successful Oh area studios would love that these days. Like this movie. Really, I mean when you're looking at seventy two point, four prophet that's Great and the movie was actually honored a lot over in Britain at the nineteen sixty six BAFTA awards. It won best British Film Best Art Direction and Best Cinematography and was nominated for best actor and screenplay. The movie was also nominated for a directors guild of America nomination for best director for Sydney J fury, and it has since been listed as number fifty, nine on the BFI list of one hundred best British films of the Twentieth Century. See I'm starting to worry now, this is when the listeners thinks that I'm just not very good at to. Reviewing films because apparently everyone who actually means anything really like this film. Yeah apparently, you're not a member of the British Film Institute. Well I can't confirm that is true. You you're right in vote just kept going for Johnny English two. I it's so so many black international. Right and the response was these twentieth century films. Couldn't my head around? Okay. I feel pretty stupid. Now, that's breaking time to move on. Yeah. So that kind of wraps up the background on the at Chris File. A movie that like I don't I can't say it's had a huge footprint over at least on my side of the bond. But there's obviously a lot bear. This really was hugely influential in the sixties. Did you say your side of the bond? Oh, I did now. Hey. If it wasn't fluential in terms of you know fans the films in the sixties maybe I don't know. But as I say never really made its way into my viewing collection or unlike that. I can't say I was particularly where apart from just seeing here in their Right I'm but. I don't I made him down the rest of the United Kingdom by Bailey acknowledging it. Sorry guys. So. What was it about the movie that didn't grab you? I could I could spend a wealthy constructing Y I didn't like it but like the the general overview was. By. Going for like an anti bone which she wrote that down in my notes Nancy bone to film. It took the fun out of for me And I understand you. Know. Films are going to be. For the jokes even how some jokes in it and McCain is quite funny in the film I just found the story to be a slightly confusing story. and. I. Didn't really care about anyone. It is very chilly like it is a cold movie. Bond has a little more of that romanticism and more sense of just having fun whereas this was almost like we are not having fun people. It kind of reminds me of like. Say something like Downton Abbey for instance f there's no familiar is a popular British TV show about old times in England. That shows quite popular in North America a lot of people look at that show and sort of think. A humdrum. Why do we care about this? And may be British drying to it. The I liked maybe I prefer this bombast approach that the bond films take because I as a kid I was the American Media Angle so that style. Whereas, I wouldn't like break showers struggle with watching over the British stuff like old doctor who for instance, right? That's interesting because I was going to ask you. As a Brit. If you found the James Bond, franchise like does it feel British or does it feel like American filmmaking kind of putting up a paper Britishness, versus this will be which feels very British at least to me I'd say it's probably the latter vice to. The bond films feel like they had that I. Use the web bombastic I guess I'll stick to that would but. There's a lot going on this jokes and as action those things whereas the the biggest action scene in film a shot through ox I love that action sequence. Thank you I. Understand why this one in the world visit him talk get white won an award for Art Direction I. Maybe I just start live film. I just thought like, why can't I say faces that they not even like each other just pushed him down the stairs. Leading audio fights. Well. I've seen real fights outside the Royal Abajo and they were more action than that. You and I can restage that fight when I come to visit it some poid I'll push it down the stairs anytime. We should just do a photo of US pushing each other down the stairs. The security but like other just eh during the. Night I would love it if security actually said that. This woke up. Yeah. Yeah So for my part, it's really interesting that a lot of what you pulled you out of the movie it was what I really loved about it, which was just how cold and remote. This thing was I really liked how it was this enigmatic look at this spy world doing very James. Bondy things, but in a way that was so stripped down and like Chile I love you know there's a moment early in the movie where Harry Palmer goes in and they're giving him a new gun and like this scene plays out. Very similar to a scene in Dr no where on getting his Walter vk but it goes in and there's a moment where he walks over he like flips a switch and you're expected gadget and it's nothing happens walks over just like a inventor tech guy basically just a drill a very standard drill. It gives them like a Colt Gun. He's like You know they use this in here. Yeah. Yeah. No problem like it's very unflashy and I felt that that kind of worked for the movie where it was the spies who work in the shadows and had this. A British of punchline where he is. Out Prefer, the will ever gun. It was an in the the boss who was at the time dolby the room. Yet leave Sophea guys Harry August. I'm using this. As Okay The humor is very understated very understated A. I mean you look at say James Bond and he's very well spoken well, kept a needle Harry Palm trees go the cockney accent Marco Cain lungs to use in basically all of his films. which I like China imitate whenever I can. So this will be coming back than worry sure But yeah, maybe that just didn't didn't help tomat- well maybe that's a way to dive into this conversation. A little further is just the comparisons between James Bond and Harry Palmer I mean even the names are very different one is very Like working class kind of name versus James Bond has a real flash and flair to it. It reminds me of you'll canadian-born identity name. Oh was it like Paul something Paul I can't remember the last thing but it was something very boring Paul K coal k. that's it. So Harry Farmer is the British Coal K Yeah, he kind of is. Yeah. But he doesn't have. A. Has the civil suit. See where some time stop. It hasn't got the talks are in Mike that no flashy gadgets. Gets the girl he does have the womanizing thing going as well like that is consistent between human bond but that's about it. I mean Harry Palmer I kind of laughed about the opening credits movie you look at the bond opening credits. It's these big to borrow your word bombastic openings with music in amazing visuals in they're very like sexy and exotic in strange whereas this opens with like Harry Palmer Mickey? Breakfast It's just grinding coffee and reading in the newspaper as the music slowly place nothing else is going on and then if they could lead the opening of dot to know and he's he's playing back her and James. Bond. Yeah completely different opening. And you have scenes were Harry. Plumbers Grocery shopping multiple scenes. I mean I do all of my spy meetings in Safeway shops, which is an old British chain now defunct, but it was nice to see that. But I never realized that I desperately wanted to see a scene where a spivey to this Boston a grocery store and complain about mushrooms and an aggressive caught hitting. Aggressive Card hitting complaints about this American way of Grocery shopping. It's trying to be serious and then the lady because officer. Excuse me. Pardon me. And I love when the boss like grabs a kegs as be free to a beef reto. Way Bit where Ross scraps a little canister in Palmer says that case and then just puts it back down again. It's a choice. I. Guess. I took multiple notes about that. See. That's how much I love that seem. I do wish a summit this film remind because this is very old school British People round like these people anymore in the way they toll on the way to act with each other. But I wish people say good day or good morning at the end of sentences. Okay. Right it doesn't happen anymore I just I think like Oh. That's a nice way to finish the sentence. Punctuation like I'm done with it could day. I'd be down for that. I did love just how much grounded. Harry Palmer in a recognizable reality like you don't see James Bond occupying the types of places that Harry Palmer does everything he does is very generic. You know he goes to a library to encounter the villain He's just walking the streets lot. He's not dressed particularly flashy. He's definitely not that charismatic of presence he's just kind of boring dude doing legwork as he says, yeah, and I one thing I'll give tip my hat to the film is geographically it's mostly correct. I'm really the Science Museum is around the corner from the Royal Albert Hole. So he could well have followed him out and walked up to the old fullest. The puck is next to as well where they do the meeting late. For the band I believe it might be the other one which is by the way talk what people that two parks in this film. There is a high park with seventeen I think and is also a Kennington in. been to buy from them. So I know you're keeping this. Once down when I over there, we have to do hip Chris File, tour. I know all of those been very well, I can take you on a very quick tool is that basically on top of each other? So did the character of Harry Palmer grab you at all like watching this character following him for two hours. I'm GONNA be honest. No particularly I think that may have been by the ultimate failure was for me which I wouldn't say it's a failure of the film as a failure of me to appreciate it. But I. I know many many Cockney paypal like that. Dry Sense of humor I don't know any spies far away but then maybe that makes them good. Spies may bad night lords, right but I just didn't find particularly interesting because I. Is Not, a new thing to me I know tons of people like that I mean, in your defense I have read several reviews after I've watched the movie I went and looked up some of the criticism. and. There are a lot of modern critics that aren't as responsive to this movie because of how Threadbare the characters are there's not a lot bear and a lot of them don't seem to be particularly. Enjoyable characters to spend a Lotta time with for me I was more drawn in just by how kind of cool the atmosphere was and how detached they were. I actually found how detached were to be really entertaining. Yeah. It was I mean we spoke about it I think it was in a couple of a guy with men in black out mean you very much a work to live people. Harry Palmer is a work to live. Kinda guy. Yeah. This is not the jet-setting guy who's giving up his entire life for the cause I mean basically recruited because he was facing potential prison time. So it's not really the guy who's there because he necessarily loves it but you know you look at James Bond's apartment which we've seen a couple of times. Now it's not particularly well decorated at all. In fact, it's fairly sparse Harry Palmer's places much more homey like you can tell it's a guy who takes pride in where he lives and has the time to decorate and cook. He loves cooking. This man loves cooking he buys the French. French transi mushrooms now, I know we've seen. Bond. Cook only once is jumping to mind I'm remembering view to a kill. He makes quiche for tenure Roberts's character but I, don't think he cooks time that I can recall, I? Mean it seems like a that's one of those anti bond. Moves is to make him a cook. Because it shows that he actually has a passion that's not to do with spike off. Right. He's a hobby. Yeah. He definitely does and you seem to be very good at it and he cooks to Mozart which I thought was pretty entertaining and he says it I'm going to cook you the best meal of your life and then the next thing it's the best meal I've ever had. Okay. I will say that love interest is just dead weight like there is nothing coming out of that character it could've have been anyone. Yeah. He's all right to sue Lloyd played the character of Courtney Courtney. widdly pronounce nine but Yeah nothing that yeah I mean that's a character introduced just to have some sex appeal and the relationship between the two of them of give it a little bit of a spark of Romance. But, I, mean, this is real perfunctory stuff. You can talk about maybe how problematic some of the bond girls are in the sixties era especially but they're given a lot more to do on screen that what she gets to do. I will give a not my she. I want to give her credit I suppose, but she is Paul of the scene of one of my favorite shots of the film. I made a note of a when he's entering his apartment and he looked through the I. think it's Quixote look and sees the gun barrel. And then they opened through. The key hole and the barrel gun it goes back she just looking at the gun, right? Yeah. There's some amazing camera shots in this movie I was actually really blown away by the direction of it city Jay fury picks a lot of very strange camera angles a lot of looking down on characters from I like heights also looking up at them a lot from low angles. You're basically looking up their nose he does that a lot you referenced the fight earlier by Roy was Robert. Hall. On the steps and he frames things in very weird ways. He's also really big on expansive spaces. There's a lot of scenes where characters in warehouses or factories, and he shoots like the entire factory in the actor is like basically just like a small little fragment of the frame. He also does this thing I probably a cinematography name for it but where the the scenes like one key to one side law oh, like Dutch angles. Yeah Right. Okay. Yeah. That that seems to be half of the shots were done that way. That was a big thing in the sixties They used it a lot on the Adam West Batman show in scenes with the villains because I want to show the villains were crooked. Literally why they used it is that is on the nose. Yeah. That was why they use that. They started to be a fun visual language approach to the villains but you've seen it it does pop up here and they're actually Kenneth Brana use that technique quite a bit in his door movie in the first. Movie I have to say I. Think I've seen that film once in cinema? It didn't stick with that. Unfortunately, I enjoyed the first store I. think it's maybe. It's I'm not going to the best of the three, but it's the one I've revisited. The most is in the introduction movies for mobile deeming would you mean in the interaction like is as the first films I thought you meant like captain, America First, Avenger or? The introduction films, Ironman ozone although although you know what out of those introduction films I watched sore the most of those two. So make of that what you will. My sister I've talked with with the sole thing, but I would have thought your mice thought would have been the last one. I enjoyed it. But I wasn't is blown away by it is a lot of other people. I thought it was fine. More of a dock wild kind of. Now. It's better than dark world dark worlds the among the worst of the marvel movies for sure. It's up there. But With Harry, pomme then he's obviously our lead of the film. I'm not saying I didn't like him a tool. It wasn't completely cold to him I I appreciate his sock capstick view on things because I tend to do the same especially in moments of pressure or intense emotion or anything like that. I will result talk as maybe that's just the British knee jerk reaction right I. Appreciate that that especially when he's dating with the major dolby or Ross that slightly. He's trying to slide the bulbs on the radar. What did you think of those bosses those characters? I've met people similar to both I would say. Although I didn't really understand Colonel Ross until right toward the end of the film and didn't know what he was going full understood major dull the until the twist. Of a known since, get the job done. So a boss. I loved Major Dolby. I. Was almost heartbroken when he turned out to be the villain because I love that character and I was like please God let this be his boss in the next two movies. I literally right down to courts of his is like, okay. Yeah. That makes sense I heard that before. Well I, I haven't heard the first one, but I'll bite you pomme I'll bite you so odd I've never had a boss. Tell me they're gonNA bite me before. And then what was the other one out just at the end of a rousing speech night and the rousing speech but like a mating stop Get on with it. I love to there's a factory that Harry calls I don't remember the code is like a two to one or something where they go and break through the doors because they think that this missing scientists are looking for named Radcliffe is potentially at that factory and basically they all come storming in. There's no one there and Harry Palmer says to a to adobe says. I would have been hero if he was here and they'll be says he wasn't an you're not. Just a matter of fact nope? But then he follows it up when saying come on I'm going to buy you allege. Character. The one bit of joy shows in the film is when he's listening to the the red line music and then the the motor afterwards. that. He's a completely joyless character I would say. But I loved him. He was so joyless that I found fascinating. I won't my Dobie spinoff. Have Prequel one day. I will take it. But you are right like Ross I didn't have a good grasp on at all and I think that's intentional. They want you to question whether that characters evil. The whole time at least once suspicions are raised. He's he's fine like Guy dolman plays that character Nigel Green Place Major Dolly. MVP Nigel Green but Yeah Guy Doleman played that character of Ross is just very matter of fact, a little bit of a temper but he's not a particularly fun character. I found dolby fun whereas Ross is just matter of fact. and. I'm just curious now if Ross is a continuing threat in the sequels. I have a feeling. He'll be sort of Boston those out in the mission. So the M of the operation. You don't think they'll do mission impossible into swap out bosses every movie. I mean. They spent a Lotta time building up. I I mean to be fed adult films have done that, and then just character in the sequel but I I would think they were brought back I I I would assume guide Ullmann's somewhat of a known time right I would guess also these movies were shot pretty much back to back like one per year for three years. So my guess is a lot of the cast locations will just carry over, but you're right though I probably would like to see more of major Dhabi rule, the two of them. They say it was more interesting and kind of funny in a standing back and watching them do it. So why were you heartbroken when he was exposes trader as a and and so now I'm looking at it I am Mohawk Burke about it I re sale much at the time I have to. Weep with me Scott we with me. Listen to me listen to me. What did you think of the villain of this movie Blue Jay played by Frank Gatling. In reference to Blue Jay I think. He's also known as he's actually grants. Bait. I. Just write down not of a villain. But was that intentional because when you look at the bond movies that have come out at that point, you've got red grant you've got Dr No, you've got gold finger. You've got Rosa Lab doesn't this character feel like the anti bond villain of just so boring. But who wants that I? Want. Boring. Boring. Even reminds me of stay bad guy from no-final Wes, right? Yes. Could say operating. Yeah I could definitely see that I mean he's definitely the type of villain though you could just see at the grocery store for example or just walking along the street sitting in a library I kind of like this very low key approach to evil spies. If, you just compared to some some the bond villains and you just think they got. Mugged on the street, they would pull out a gun and kill the guy mocking them. I could I could see blue Jay grumpy I should say just getting beaten up is water taken into kind of shuffling with his head hung. Right. Let's have a sad sack to me. That's why he had that. House Morton, character who was kind of his thug who I was surprised was dispatched very quickly. Yeah. Another way of saying ee think has fight seeing outside the whole which seems to be our favorites he came back to this is the thing I probably hate at the medicine this film. Even your loved it is dead police sell ten minutes later. Yeah. I mean. I. Think. They're just subverting a lot of what you expect from I'm sure that bond movies had trained people to expect from these types of movies. It seemed like they were going out of their way to always not give you that which I kind found very impressive. See I understand subverting expectation and sometimes that works. Now you look at like the loss Jedi I think that did a lot of surveying expectation ready well. I just this one survived in a way to just make it boring. They took all the fun stuff out with spy movies for me. Right. I. Mean. That's definitely true. You're wrong. I. This is this is the ultimate the point I, write lychee right the end I wrote down the HIP diseases file. Wow Who I'm letting down a nation right now I think i. felt sorry for actually I I stick to my guns this film board me I'm so sorry. Flags are going to be flying at half-mast in Britain tomorrow. I'M GONNA wake up and they like graffitied my house and for an Exa, and everything has to be harassed the streets is going to be horrible. What think again, differentiating this from the bond movies I thought was interesting was when Harry Palmer is captured in this movie and we should say a lot of the plot is very mysterious although I actually found it easier to and some of the bond plots but a bunch of scientists have been going missing and Radcliffe is the one who's going to sing at the start of the movie he's recovered but he's Not all there. Ultimately, Harry Palmer is key damped by the villains and we get a sense of what their scheme is, which is brainwashing and I bought this brainwashing stuff was amazing. What did you think of Harry's a imprisonment but also be the brainwashing the imprisonment they I quite enjoyed because it was actually a deposit from house arrest of the film was going it felt that there was actually something going on. Alves Eve he's been tortured in such a way mocking today's down. He's keeping himself awake and the reveal afterwards. Also I it is something I quite enjoyed. I didn't see it coming I thought he was now and so genuine surprise that he was in bicycling Knightsbridge Y- that actually surprised me as well because I also thought he was in Albania I was curious. I have one question maybe you picked up on it, I couldn't quite get it. So the way they're torture and MS, they're keeping him freezing, sell their waking up a lot but there's a thing with them starving him where they sent him bread. That's like sitting in water or something, and he never touches it. What was going on there I couldn't quite get it. I did watch this film a second time. So maybe that's why I'm so bitter about it provides. I from what I could make out because I did make a point is trying to look at that. Again I think they fried the bread in hot oil. So. When you try and grab a, it's very hot bread. You might just about get the bread, but you wouldn't get the flight or and that. That makes a Lotta sense because I was thinking it was water and I was thinking boiling water but then I was like this doesn't really make sense to me I don't get what's going on. It would just make the bread wet it wouldn't. It wouldn't cook it. It was just water whereas oil you actually get a toasty so bright, right? Okay. Took from anyway. Okay. That actually answered my question but I thought this whole sequence is really strong of him. Basically trying to keep his sanity carving the days into the wall I mean, Harry. Palmer's imprisoned for minimum twelve days in this movie that would never happen to bond. You know you look at Dr Know where he's locked in his cell during that movie when he's now he's out of that cell in about thirty seconds and up in the vents I mean he does have sort of the bond escape beats up the goons and makes it makes away. But yeah, I takes twelve days of him being brainwashed having a hurt himself bleeding, solving, growing a bed out like he looks bad. And held and Hell unflashy is his escape. It's the on flashiest is is how we would escape I. Imagine maybe actually overpowering to people he likes slowly walks across the courtyard it just like should be over a fence. Yeah, I meant to ask you I mentioned over follow up to your question before you mentioned about the brainwashing itself which you quite enjoyed. Yeah. No saying you want to be brainwashed but. Did you get. So of a clockwork orange vibe from that one I think I've mentioned Gagarin's again. Might be too upset in a row now. That whole stimulus overload thing going on with this predates clockwork orange but I. I would say there is a very strong aspect of sixties PSYCHEDELIA and we haven't touched on that much actually so far in our journey on this podcast, we will be getting into it a lot. In some movies coming up in the future both good and bad. But this was a very real thing in the sixties and it's the one moment I felt like this movies very chilly and icy throat. But then you hit this sequence and slowly that sixties vibrancy and Psychedelia and colors, and we're visuals really come to the forefront and I enjoyed how they kind of held back on that for so long this whole swinging London sixties. PSYCHEDELIA vibe and then they hit you with it in brainwashing sequence I thought that was really effective. They are making a point to actually yeah, you're right. Not Pay attention. All this stuff was happening in London that time. 'cause it's quite colorful city at that point not in this movie no, it's just blew. and. SORTA like that Dingy Grey it looks very matter of fact. Yeah. It looks it looks lifting and real which I think is. What they were going for it. Yeah. Totally and I mean I thought the brainwashing sequences were super effective I thought they were just really memorable and it's not like he overpowers he's amazing. Psyche is just using a physical thing. He's been taught to overcome that sort of stimuli which is hunting so Yeah and that's something he goes to a few times, which is poking himself with a nail or there's a moment at the end where. Ross and Dhabi Bo show up. He doesn't quite know which one's the bad guy yet but Dhabi reveals himself to be the bad guy and we get this like over the shoulder shot of airy Palmer's gun going back and forth between the two guys as Palmer's ordering him to kill Ross using the hypnotic techniques that will basically mess with areas mind and his. Way of breaking that is to punch like some sharp metal to cut himself so that he's able to gun down dolby and I thought that was really effective as well. I actually didn't pick up on it. The first time I watched film I couldn't figure out how he understood. It was still be apart from the fact that will be set. This'll trigger phrase. I didn't really see that quick slicing his hand on the camera whatever it was. Yeah. I on the second watching it again is a nice through line nick at nite going it is and I'm very curious like what did you think about the brainwashing being kind of the core of this movie for the villain plot like did it seem goofy to you? Not really because it wasn't like they were brainwashing people to. Think of like zoo Landa. Right. Now over the talk brainwashing sequence to try and get him to fascinate some dignitaries on that right if I remember correctly, which I shouldn't be because brainwashing is a thing we're going to be tackling quite a bit I think on this podcast Manchurian candidate that'll be an element of that. Also as you know on Her Majesty's Secret Service has a whole brainwashing hypnosis element to it as well. It's something that was very Much in the air I guess in nineteen sixties there's probably a reason for that which I'm sure we do some research and find out why it was in the Zeitgeist. The time I'm wondering if the Russians were experimenting with brainwashing at the time, I'll do a little research for when we do Manchurian candidate we'll get back to you guys. Yeah. That'll be a little down the road, but I'll be curious how you Enjoy that film in comparison say to this one, which is similar themes done very differently. I I tend to make this film. I think the brainwashing bit fine because it's subtle. Brainwashing could actually theoretically do. Right, to make you forget you pause store slide suggestions and things like that. Which is why gain to before and so I think that was really well. The question I thought like for a movie that keeps you a little bit on tenterhooks throughout waiting to find out what sort of the villain plot is because the village was hanging around library he's he's not the most Showy of villains bone. You actually get the payoff as to what the plot is found it interesting and the payoff strong enough that I could completely justified they'll build up for it. Yeah. I. Now would say I'm not a big fan of be as a villain I. think he was just so of that too. So carry free but Dobie, when you break it down, I think is much better than. I agree and I mean what? What even happens to grant He gets away. I think. So which is kind of weird as well. It's again very. Not, a bond thing that would happen of the villain just the villains not even mentioned. He just kind of disappears and you don't hear mentioned everyone you. You would probably get a state of bond turning up to date on what he's eighteen taking him out on that like a follow up scene at the end of the film right? Or Blonde would be on a train with the sue Lloyd Character Courtney and grumpy would show up dressed as a maitre d'. Exactly. Yes. Now. I I know we mentioned briefly about. Courtney's character counts I should say by it anointed, there is a distinct lack of female representation, and so you know when we started this podcast that was something became very aware of because I put together a master list has some behind the scenes for people listening I have a master list of spy films for us to go to, and that was something I began to realize was that a lot of these movies are very dude centric The bond movies obviously have their female leads in there, but a lotta spy movies are kind of like the the of men if you will. I have no problem with films trying to be somewhat factual to the era they were set in. and. If you I imagine most people operating spies at this time, it was mostly a Mayo. Mayo area of what I would say. But there's lots of other things that women. Doing in this film. But instead you get a blind love interest and in the only the woman characters firemen but is the Nagy Receptionist Lady? Sir Yeah I mean there are other women that just kind of pop in, but they're mostly just there. So Harry Palmer can stare really creepy at them Oh yes. I. Think it means working for the car donations on. I. Have a good evening to awesome. Yeah. He has a very weird approach in that like bond has his little quips or his humor whereas Harry, Palmer just stares women down. It's very weird. Yeah Out that of gripes about the film I definitely mentioned it I. Know It was a trading to Harry Palmer second but as a sprung to my mind, he has the same backstory Napoleon. Soda. Yet very similar. Isn't it? Was Mad from uncle. Break production was in America production. It was American but we also don't know. The backstory for Napoleon Solo that was given in the movie. We don't know if that applies to the show I. Don't know that it does that's true. We didn't want that far into. Yeah. Getting back to the moments that sort of burt bond tropes I really enjoyed the introduction of the CIA agent who's the Felix Leiter character if you will, who is this dude of glasses that just kinda shows up? In the background scene or two and then dives like there's no relationship there Harry Palmer has no idea who this guy is. He's one of those characters I lost track of him on first viewing and I had to find out what happened to annualized. Harry Potter shut him in that car bog. Did he or was that actually daulby? Now now you. Wait wasn't Harry Palmer well, I don't know because Harry Palmer being framed. So I'm always I was a little unclear on that act the fact that it seems like a Terry Palmer that kills him, but it wouldn't shock me if Dobie was the one that shot him. I don't really know I mean I might of Fallen Asleep twice. Missed it. I may be wrong. So maybe I need a second watch as well but you. A thing I did when I mentioned just another gripe with the film. Which is the other American agent. Johnny, which is play by Thomas Baptiste. The only major city as wearing says, any words? Basically, Harry Palmer is in the auditorium with adult directly. On a bunch of scientists and this agent. Now Harry Palmer is scanning the room I guess for some reason. To make sure the address goes well, something else to record has a breakdown now Harry Palm Spots Bonnie in the crowd. He's anyone smoking pipe. But he also happens to be the only black person in the crowd. Is that why Harry Palmer looked at him is this were moving now I might say there's maybe some more subtext or something there but this being a nineteen, sixty, five film. I think we have to assume the uncomfortable. Yeah. This is I noticed in my second watch fruit I. Didn't really pay attention that much in the first one to things like this but I just made me feel really uncomfortable. He it's not like he also does the way thing if y y one else runs, the doctor that's been. taught him noticing him? It would have been fine. There wouldn't have been an issue. It's all right. But the ANEURYSM, he notices Bonnie MD crowd. Because he's black. that. Seemed to be the case to me as well. I think we have to accept that the Chris file not very good towards women or minorities evidently. Yeah. One of the things though I'll bring up my last point that I really enjoyed about this movie was. that. How to rap the headquarters are you know when you look at the bond movies the secret service offices with Moneypenny as the secretary and the padded door and then M's office it's all very luxurious I. Loved How drab an ugly all the locations were for the offices. You know they have one of them set up at the Dobie Domestic Employment Bureau which is the most like ramshackle, almost depressing building with the secretary that just kinda looks almost like a chain smoker and just kind of. Totally, not a Monte Penny friendly type. And this just extends across all the scenarios that are professional movie. I loved when he goes to his surveillance job start and it's Just, it's Flop House with like girls, pinned to the walls and super ugly looking I liked him all the workspaces in this movie looked hideous. Yeah. It has a sense of nitty gritty realism. I think this film has stuck to all the way from. To. The story itself I think that that is a strength, the film that it does keep it. I didn't really enjoy it but at least it sticks to its guns earn enough. I guess I have one question for you though. Because we've got two more Harry, Palmer films to go from this point of just having watched the Chris file. What do you hope to see in the future movies that maybe you didn't get in this one? Safari key question maybe the anything that would draw me in a bit more because I don't think, Nick. Guys thought leaning into the camp side of spy films. I. Didn't think that stuff's going to make its way. I go. Try steak around in realism just may be more of an enticing story. Right which I think is fair enough. This is definitely a very kind of aloof almost uninvolved story, but almost intentionally. So yeah, it just feels like you're reading a factual dossier on an actual thing that happened. Right or look you're watching it rain accident of a actually happened, right? That's. A couple of things I wanted to just mention I wanNA give major props to major dolby as a man who also has a curly mustache. Yeah. His mustache game is on point and for those wondering harm I have a full on a lockdown at the moment but my mustaches twirling at the end. So kudos to Dolby is were in were in sync with mustaches I entirely in favor of major being our mascot going forward. He's everything I want to be as a leader apart from evil. He's everything I want to be as a man. He saying you couldn't grow eight if you drive. No, I couldn't no. Not a chance I would like to see with facial hair. I have ever seen you. It's like anything other than double. Yeah. It's not pretty Okay EMC my bid. I had a question for you. would. You say that you spent enough time in the film with the brainwashing means to get an idea why suicide to be brainwashed? I would say, so yes, I think it did a really good job. Playing out these imprisonment sequences and then also you know the horrors of being in this box with all these images and sounds around you I think did a really good job. You feel uncomfortable because I think a lot of movies when they have hypnosis. They make it kind of fun and colorful whereas this had this really shrill tone on the soundtrack that was unpleasant to listen to. You could understand sort of the torment that Harry was going through in that moment. So I'm doing a little science experiment them uh-huh hi. This is for everyone listening I'm. All right. Listen to me. Listen to me. eurogin subscribe to this podcast and give it a five star rating on every single app you can find until your friends to listen. Thanks. Anyway moving on. Good plug good plug yeah. To. Try You know I am curious though if the villain and this is Blue Jay and all the other villains are named after birds what is your bird name? Well, there you haven't. What about yourself blue footed booby. Why did we both go with like booby drugs. I don't know. How Telling this is telling I just went with the funniest bird name I could come up with off the top of my head and that was where I wait I didn't even make the connection. We have memory glands on the brain apparently. Okay. Well, I guess Scott that does raise a fascinating question. This week of does the Chris file make the NOC list I was afraid of this question. I don't want to answer this question I'm going to leave the cost. Okay, my aunt Joan's. Did, I enjoy the film? Not. Will I watch it again? Nut. Is it a good spy film? The highlights of particular area of the spy genre. Maybe. And that's my dilemma coming away from it. I I don't necessarily have to enjoy these films to think they are. A good spice own. Right trying to be so constructive with my criticism in a sense I'm. I didn't like. That's fine. But it doesn't mean the isn't a good example of this version of spike, which is so ultra grounded. Like Craig era of bond without some of the bond trappings. Before I give my full ons I been behavior. This is a tough one because like so far in the lead up to this movie, all the episodes we've done our movies I know if not. Super well, at least know them fairly well or have a real sense of their legacy whereas I stand a little bit of disadvantaged with this one in that. I very aware that the Harry Palmer movies are very important obviously, lunch Michael Cain these movies have I think more of a footprint internationally than they do where I live in North America North America these movies. pretty obscure. Really you can't even really find affordable copies to buy on Amazon, for example, they're not streaming on itunes. They're not really that available, and so it's hard for me to say easy in because of the legacy of this franchise. I'm very I get just by being a North American a little I have less of a grasp on what the legacy is. I will say though as a spy film I did find it engrossing I. found it a really interesting alternate on kind of pulse spy hero, very different the James Bond Interested to see how this franchise evolves I enjoyed the hell out of watching it. So in terms of being like a an engrossing spy film that I really found entertaining and fairly iconic and moments and just had a lot of imagination going forward a very offbeat approach to the spy formula. I would say, yes but I can also like I think there's wiggle room on this one wiggle room in what sense there's some wiggle room on whether it makes it in like when we did north by northwest I felt very, very strongly that north by northwest really belonged on that list whereas this one having only seen at once also being a little bit removed from the impact is movies. Had I'm a little more up in the air as to whether it's a definitive. This belongs in the Canon versus this is a really fun movie I enjoyed that I think was really great people should check out but is it an all time spy movie? That's where I stand a little bit. I guess a little bit of a question mark over me I, suppose it's the sense of. I know there's two more of these films attitudes to TV movies I did as well. Yeah. A part of me is almost interested. So say the next one's improve on bits I have problems with so that it makes a more of a easier. Yes for me. That's why I'm debating with but then by saying no for instance, run the gambit of the follow ups being just was films look at the men in black franchise. Sure. Yeah. I mean my answer would be yes for this one. but it's not like an emphatic. Yes. If I go with yes. This is the second time that we initially disagreed in you so of taking me to your. Right I'm not. As I said in the beginning list I didn't like the film personally it's not something I'd want to revisit but I'm aware that this is A. A bit of a touchstone in the spy genre right for a lot of people and I'm not to that fact just mind those suited might secular tights it I liked men in black right and you didn't as a kid you didn't like it. So we obviously have different tastes, right? I think I'm GonNa go with yes but it is a very, very loose. Yes. Yeah. It is a little bit of a tough call because I feel like we're both fairly removed in. This movie. What the impacts it's had haven't aged as well. Like is that a question that we meet that we maybe need to grapple with a little bit too is that obviously some of these movies we're going to take on have aged incredibly well, and others maybe haven't has this will be not aged as well as say, those early bonds north by northwest which are shot around same time. I think this film is very grounded in the set. Yes. Does for like nineteen, sixty five whereas you could apply of the bond films. Now you could more let's get by. Of the SCI fi elements and stuff like that. Yeah. There's some you know racial things or gender things that are a little uncomfortable with some of the old bonds but the stories translate quite well still ultimately I don't feel safe in rolling the dice on the follow up films right? So I'M GONNA. Give this a yes. With a massive asterix next to it. Okay. Fair enough. I can't take it back I realized by saying, yes, it's on the list. It's cannon. But I think more people will probably enjoy this film than me being one who didn't like it and judging by. A boards one? I think I'm probably on the bad side of history. Right. So I mean I think it's a little bit conflicted for both of us for different reasons. One for you it's because you just didn't enjoy kind of the experience of watching this movie whereas for me, it's being somewhat removed from the legacy of what this movie is like I understand one hundred percent y north by northwest is important within the the world of cinema whereas the Chris file I feel a little more removed from and so that's where I think I struggle because because some of them I'm not necessarily like a massive lover, all those of movies we're going to do in the future what I understand historically why important and belong on the cannon and people should really watch them whereas this one I feel like I enjoyed the hell out of watching what I also don't know that it's vital that everyone check it out I don't really know and you said a couple of episodes. In this wrong in my head, the Nautilus is the additional same. Yeah is separate from my opinion on the film. Right on, that's how I'm trying to come at it. So that's why I'm giving it the. Yes. But I wouldn't recommend able to go watch this as Sunday afternoon film I didn't find enjoyable. You may recommend some of your friends to what you have, but I do it but if someone comes to me and says Scott Give me. Ten great spy films currently, we have four on the list I have to give him next conflicted yeses still yes ultimately. So yeah. Will put the file in the NOC list and hopefully we're not proven foolish when we watch the sequels. Yeah hopefully, it wasn't too much of a gamble. But got. So just to clarify yesen. Yes. Yup. Sorry. They have it. The Chris file is officially on the NOC list with that revelation the dossier on the Chris file is complete un-filed as classified, and if you want to track the NOC list jump over to letterbox dot com slash spy hearts, we will have basically a visual representation of what the NOCHOLAS is. You can check it out there as well as listings of the movies that didn't make the NOCHOLAS and just all the movies we've done. So head over there and you can engage with us and argue back and forth about whether something did or didn't belong on the knuckle list had it will be augury with me about this week's episode we'll see. Camp what we tackling next week we are GONNA have a real change of pace I guess if going from Hannah to the Chris, vile wasn't a change of pace. This one is a real head spinner. We are going to take on the Nineteen Eighty-four family espionage film Cloak and Dagger starring Henry Thomas and Dabney. Coleman I think a lot of. People sort of in my generation, you know born around one, thousand, nine, hundred, eighty, have some familiarity with this movie. So I think this'll be a fun to revisit it and I haven't seen it since I was like a really young kid. So this is GonNa be a fun experience I wouldn't be surprised if this is one of those films I saw. In. The background never really need to film title or something to his own at one point. But I from looking at stills seem to recall it. It may be I watch for me. Okay. Listeners your mission should you choose to accept it is to watch cloak and dagger before next week's episode but don't forget to follow US discreetly. Of course, on social media at spy Hod. Says Espy Wide A. D.. S. On facebook twitter and instagram but. Until next week listeners. Good luck. Among the shadows.