THE KREMLIN LETTER should have been a huge film for Huston. From his epic tale of espionage to his who's who of familiar faces like Sydow and Welles (sweating through his Russian accent), this should have been a success. That was never the case. A mixture of twists upon twists upon twists aimed at keeping the viewers guessing until the end, sadly twisted itself into a knot, unable to focus the viewer's attention.
The 1st hour could've been easily cut by 20 minutes, as The Kremlin Letter never quite catches fire in its pace, and it doesn't even have depth in its story or characters either. The next hour oddly sheds its main character for too long and overall the film starts to be less-and-less interesting. It ultimatey loses interest and things take too long to come together. Great cast, but a disappointing effort by Huston.
The script had me guessing the whole time. Turns out Patrick O'Neal does make quite a good leading man. His job is difficult because he's on a mission, and he doesn't know what the mission is. During training for the mission he must teach a beautiful young woman the art of love. Then he gets over to Russia, and must seduce the wife of a VIP. This guy is pretty lucky except for the people trying to kill him.
Scénario des plus classiques pour une réalisation finalement fort peu convaincante. La prestation cinématographique moyenne du grand John Huston provoque une amère déception. A voir, sans plus, pour le remarquable casting et quelques scènes nerveuses plutôt bien agencées... www.cinefiches.com
Enjoyable spy movie with some of the most recognizable international mugs of the time. George Sanders and Orson Welles's class is bursting out while the shadow of Peter Sturdevant, the invisible master spy thought dead, is lingering on the Moscow snow. Now did Bryan Singer and Christopher McQuarrie see this film when they were writing Keyser Söze's character for The Usual Suspects ? Certainly. Recommended.
It's extremely convoluted but still worthwhile. A group of semi-governmental agents sneak into Russia to expose a corrupt politician and retrieve a letter that may expose one of them as a traitor. There's terrific performances by Richard Boone and Patrick O'Neal & George Sanders as a drag queen/spy. Orson Welles is the chief Russian villain(?) Max von Sydow and Bibi Andersson are a kinky KGB couple.