Tuesday, January 20, 2015


"Why yes, I did get this job because I look vaguely like that
other fellow...."
1) Okay, we get that Tom Adams was hired to play Charles Vine because if you squint in a dark room, he sorta looks like Sean Connery....but do you have to keep reminding us with jokey references to 007?

2) I can’t decide if this film is meant to be taken straight or as a burlesque.  Adams and other actors play their role with a grim earnestness, but then we get villains named ‘HeShe’ and ‘Sadistico’ that seem a touch broad.

3) And since we’re on the subject of villains, the script never gives us a solid one.  We get a group of Soviets, a doppelganger and the aforementioned HeShe and Sadistico--but none of them are vividly enough drawn to qualify as a superspy baddie.

4) As non-sequitorial as the idea of Vine taking a first in Mathematics at Oxford is, it cleverly allows for the exposition about Regrav to be better disguised as a dialogue between peers and not a scientist explaining his work to a blunt object.

5) You know what’s really jarring?  That weird ass guitar based musical score.  It seems too jaunty to belong in a spy movie.

6) While it’s obvious that the film is very low budget, I have to admit I didn’t realize that the big MacGuffin was never seen until after the fact...which is pretty effective screenwriting by Lindsay Shonteff and Howard Griffiths.

7) I guess I should be grateful that Vine barely gives Veronica Hurst’s Julia the time of day save for looking at her legs because she’s....well, a very bad actress and decidedly mannish in appearance.  I almost expected her to be revealed as HeShe at one point.

8) Okay, you make a big deal about the soviet baddies having a doppelganger of Vine they plan to replace him with so he can assassinate Karel Stepanek’s Jacobsen.  Then why don’t you ever even tease that Vine has been replaced, rather showing him being thwarted in his attempts before being uncerimoniously killed at the climax?

9)  You know how you can tell a film’s low budget?  When they use stock footage to represent the hero showing his charge the sights of London.

10) This ending makes. No. Sense.  Even with that seemingly endless scene of Vine’s superior explaining the plot afterwards.

Overall...a peculiar little oddity that may not be the greatest low budget spy movie of the era, but has some charm.  And to think there are two sequels and three sort of rip off Shonteff wrote featuring ‘Charles Bind,’ one of which starred Gareth ‘I was in The New Avengers’ Hunt!

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