Agent for H.A.R.M. (1966)

AGENT FOR H.A.R.M. (1966)
Article #1457 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 3-11-2005
Posting Date: 8-8-2005
Directed by Gerd Oswald
Featuring Peter Mark Richman, Carl Esmond, Barboura Bouchet

A secret agent investigates a scientist with a secret, and discovers that he is working on an antidote for a flesh-eating virus that is in the hands of a terrorist.

At first I was going to lump this one in with those all those low-budget Italian James Bond ripoffs I’ve seen, but then I noticed something. First of all, I noticed the absence of all the dubbing I usually find. Second, the credits seemed singularly short on Italian names. The answer to this was simple; it wasn’t an Italian movie at all, but an American one. In fact, despite the fact that it was given a theatrical release, it was actually a pilot for a TV series. This latter discovery doesn’t surprise me; there was something about the end of this movie that just screamed “Make sure to tune into AGENT FOR H.A.R.M. next week!”

Still, it does feel like one of those Italian rip-offs; it’s very cheesy and slow-moving, and my print was about as faded as those Italian movies usually are by the time I get to watching them. Despite that, I liked it well enough. The basic plot has to do with a virus that eats people up from the inside, and the villains actually use a gun that shoots the virus . Also, it was fun to see Martin Kosleck as the villain of his piece. My favorite moment, though, has to do with the Morgue attendant. Yes, I know that comic morgue attendants are a bit of a cliche, but this guy takes the cake; he treats the corpses like visitors at a hotel, and insists that proper protocol is respected when he shows the corpses to people. At least he doesn’t pull his lunch out of one of the drawers, but I figured they though there would be plenty of opportunities to pull that gag when they made the series.

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