Catch Me a Spy Keep Your Fingers Crossed, To Catch A Spy (1971)
I liked Marlène Jobert and hoped she would end up with Sir Tom Courtenay’s Baxter the clerk. Kirk Douglas was alright but he came across as a crochety old goat.
The idea of the movie wasn’t bad and Jobert was really funny but the thing that killed this movie was that it was made in the 70’s, that dark age of cinematography history. The economy was in a recession, studios were selling off props, sets, actors to stay in the black and movie quality went in the crapper. Clothes were coming off, parts were exposed or barely covered and adultery seemed to be the topic of many movies. The accompanying music is hyperbolic in an effort to instill a mood that is nonexistent at many points and inappropriate at others. A pragmatic depiction of an amiable East/West competition and old boys club of sorts that set the stage for one woman’s efforts to catch a spy in order to trade for her husband? Pretty decent. A strong, fun leading lady with a terrible haircut? Sure, sure. A movie made poorly enough that it distracts us from what’s actually going on? Not as much fun.
I’d recommend watching it but it makes me sad for what it could have been…