In late 1941, with the Nazi invasion of Russia still advancing, the Red Army leaves bands of guerillas behind in the forests. One such band is joined by beautiful ballet dancer Nina; initially inept, a series of bitter lessons gradually make her a seasoned soldier. The group still form human attachments, despite the shadow of grim death that makes their greatest hope one of selling their lives dearly… —IMDb
The first director Val Lewton hired for his RKO unit was Jacques Tourneur, and the first picture made by that unit was Cat People, an original screenplay by DeWitt Bodeen.
When Tourneur’s father, Maurice, returned to Paris after a number of years in America, Jacques had gone with him, working as assistant director and editor for his father. In 1933, he made a few directorial solos in the French language and then returned to Hollywood, where he became an assistant director at MGM. It was at this time that he first met Val Lewton, and the two young men worked as special unit directors for Jack Conway on A Tale of Two Cities ; it was Lewton and Tourneur who staged the storming of the Bastille sequence for that film.
Tourneur remained at MGM, directing over 20 short subjects, and Lewton eventually went on to become David O. Selznick’s story editor. When Lewton left Selznick to head his own production unit at RKO, he had already made up his mind that Tourneur would direct his… read more
The war was won with American braun, British brains and Russian blood. Peck is the destroyer, Gilmore the information specialist, Toumanova the heart. Fitting isn't it?
plus comrade peck is hotter than a two dollar pistol. i'm guessing this got buried during the cold war. a shame
The greatest USSR propaganda film ever made. Made by a French director in an American B studio with a Russian ballerina. The cinema is a miracle and this miracle burns all the world's propaganda into ashes.