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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Stopover Tokyo (1957)

An American counterintelligence agent (Robert Wagner) arrives in Tokyo for a seemingly routine assignment when he discovers a plot to assassinate the American High Commissioner (Larry Keating) in Japan. An attractive Welsh airline clerk (Joan Collins) finds herself unwittingly swept up into the investigation. Directed by Richard L. Breen and based on the novel by John P. Marquand. The book featured Marquand's Japanese detective Mr. Moto but he was entirely eliminated from this film version. It's a fairly standard spy film that benefits from the gorgeous Japanese location shooting (in Kyoto) in CinemaScope courtesy of Charles G. Clarke (MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET). Oddly both its stars (Wagner and Collins) have disparaged the film although both have done worse (far worse) films. This being the 1950s, the "commies" are the enemy, here being represented by Edmond O'Brien although the film doesn't get anywhere near the ludicrousness of something like BIG JIM MCLAIN. Breen manages to keep the suspense quotient high at the start but it dissipates by the film's wan finale. With Ken Scott, Reiko Oyama and Sarah Selby.

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