In England, the Italian English hairdresser Milo Tindle is invited by the successful writer of detective stories Andrew Wyke to visit his isolated house. The lower class Milo is the lover of Andrew’s wife, who is used to have a comfortable life, and he intends to marry her. Andrew proposes Milo to steal his jewelry simulating a burglary. Milo would make a fortune selling the jewels to an intermediary; and Andrew would be reimbursed by the insurance company and would not pay alimony. However, the whole situation was part of an evil game. When Milo vanishes, a detective visits Andrew to investigate what really happened that night, when deadly games are disclosed. —IMDb
Born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, on February 11, 1909, Joseph Leo Mankiewicz first worked for the movies as a translator of intertitles, employed by Paramount in Berlin, the UFA’s American distributor at the time (1928). He became a dialoguist, then a screenwriter on numerous Paramount productions in Hollywood, most of them Jack Oakie vehicles. Still in his 20s, he produced first-class MGM films, including The Philadelphia Story (1940). Having left Metro after a dispute with studio chief Louis B. Mayer over Judy Garland, he then worked for Darryl F. Zanuck at 20th Century-Fox, producing The Keys of the Kingdom (1944), when Ernst Lubitsch’s illness first brought him to the director’s chair for Dragonwyck (1946). Mankiewicz directed 20 films in a 26-year period, successfully attempted every kind of movie from Shakespeare adaptation to western, from urban sociological drama to musical, from epic film with thousands of extras to a two-character picture. A Letter to Three Wives (1949… read more
Despite some of its nuanced and mischievous qualities, there is a real sense of life threatening malevolence that is shared between Milo Tindle and Andrew Wyke. In a way their hatred for each other is defined simply by being themselves. Olivier and Caine both give pathetic and despairing presentations of their characters savage egos. But its their disparate egos that make the characters and situation so indulgent.
Oscar-winning American director Joseph L. Mankiewicz (“All About Eve” & “Cleopatra”) capped off his career by teaming up with English screenwriter Anthony Shaffer (“Frenzy” & “The Wicker Man”… read review