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The Ipcress File
The Ipcress File
Actors: Michael Caine, Nigel Green, Guy Doleman, Sue Lloyd, Gordon Jackson
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Military & War
NR     1999     1hr 49min

In the spy-crazed film world of the 1960s, Len Deighton's antihero Harry Palmer burst onto the scene as an antidote to the James Bond films. Here was a British spy who had a working-class accent and horn-rimmed glasses and...  more »


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Actors: Michael Caine, Nigel Green, Guy Doleman, Sue Lloyd, Gordon Jackson
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Military & War
Sub-Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Mystery & Suspense, Military & War
Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic
DVD Release Date: 10/12/1999
Original Release Date: 08/02/1965
Theatrical Release Date: 08/02/1965
Release Year: 1999
Run Time: 1hr 49min
Screens: Color,Widescreen,Anamorphic
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 22
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Member Movie Reviews

Chuck B. (ChuckB4Me) from WENTZVILLE, MO
Reviewed on 7/22/2021...
I have received this video, please mark my account as received!!!!!!!!!!!
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.

Movie Reviews

Great spy thriller
Alejandra Vernon | Long Beach, California | 06/01/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Magnificently directed by Sidney Furie, this terrific thriller has one of Michael Caine's most memorable performances, and a sensational score by John Barry.Caine's Harry Palmer is a marvelous anti-Bond...a guy in a dull job who suddenly finds himself in extraordinary circumstances. He has his quirks...he goes against authority, has his sharp wit, his gourmet food, and "that look" behind the horn rimmed glasses.The plot revolves around a "brain drain" of scientists in England, and has spies, the CIA, and all the usual suspects...which in this case are a little harder to predict.With brilliant writing (Bill Canaway/James Doran), superb cinematography (Otto Heller), and some good character actors (I love Alice the office anti-Ms. Moneypenny !) this is a film that will keep you interested for many viewings...suspenseful, amusing, and you'll just be wild about Harry."
Len Deighton's Spy with No Name = Harry Palmer
John Dziadecki | Louisville, CO USA | 09/06/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Len Deighton's first novel presents the micro-detail workings of a nameless espionage agent's workaday world. The protagonist is as far removed from the glamour world of James Bond as you can get -- in fact, it's the polar opposite. The film IS a departure from Deighton's novel but what is here works well.

The entire cast is very good. The story moves along at a leisurely but good pace. The cinematography takes on a persona of its own that bears well under repeated viewing. John Barry's score is one of his best and quite different in tone from his Bond scores. Production values are top notch. And it's quite surprizing when you realize this film's producer is Harry Saltzman -- one of the co-producers of the Bond series! In fact, Saltzman brought along some of the Bond crew to work on "The Ipcress File".

This is Michael Caine's first starring role in film. Saltzman tapped Caine after seeing his excellent perfomance in "Zulu". Caine does a yeoman job of portraying the novel's spy with no name as Harry Palmer, complete with deadpan, wry humor.

On DVD, the film is presented in its intended original aspect ratio of 2.35:1. The image looks quite good. The sound is the original clear mono. There is commentary by director Sidney J. Furie and editor Peter Hunt. Anchor Bay is to be congratulated for making this film available on disc. Which brings us to a sore subject

"The Ipcress File" is currently out of print in the US. The film is lated to be screened in Washington, DC. Maybe there's some renewed interest in the film which might lead to a remastered edition on DVD? Who knows who owns the copyright? ITM, try vising your local library or rental outlet to see this film.

IMHO, it's an excellent film -- filled with believable characters and situations and enough plot twists to keep you wondering what the heck's going on. A keeper."
M. Nichols | West Chester, OH United States | 08/06/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"THE IPCRESS FILE does for espionage films what BULLITT did for police films; it provides what seems to be a realistic depiction of the trade as opposed to Hollywood glamourization. And it succeeds marvelously.

Caine turns in an excellent performance as Harry Palmer, a secret agent investigating the "brain drain" of leading government physicists who have been kidnapped only to reappear with their scientific knowledge erased. In additon to providing the audience with an alternative to James Bond, dealing daily with paperwork and beaurocracy and completely devoid of gadgets, the film gives the viewer real insight into counter-espionage techniques, portraying Plamer as more of a detective than a playboy (did James Bond ever take time away from the casino to locate Blofeld by tracking down the location of his most frequently issued parking tickets?).

I very much enjoy the direction of this film, which made impressive use of the widescreen format. Low, angled shots add to the drama immensely. My one complaint is that, while performances are all top-notch, the plot fizzles upon resolution and it seems as if apprehension of the key villain is as unimportant as reversing the "brain drain." The entire experience of THE IPCRESS FILE is good enough, however, that this does little to hamper the viewer's enjoyment of this film."