La valse du gorille (1959)

aka Operation Top Secret
Article 3065 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 9-28-2009
Posting Date: 1-4-2010
Directed by Bernard Borderie
Featuring Roger Hanin, Charles Vanel, Jess Hahn
Country: France
What it is: Probably a Gizmo Maguffin spy thriller

Plans for a method of returning space rockets to earth become the prize in a battle of wits between spies.

The title above translates into THE GORILLA’S WALTZ, which is an interesting title; I wouldn’t have an idea what the movie was about from that one. However, the title under which it first entered my list isn’t that ambiguous; I’d expect a movie called OPERATION TOP SECRET to be a spy movie of sorts. My copy is in French with no subtitles, and a good deal of the plot description above is from John Stanley’s “Revenge of the Creature Features Movie Guide”, and that is pretty sparse. It was apparently based on a novel that was part of a series of spy novels by one Antoine-Louis Dominique (a former secret agent), and the Gorilla is apparently the nickname of the main character here. The movie has a low rating on IMDB, so I’m assuming the story is fairly weak, but it has some odd little touches, such as the spy with the magnetic hook for a hand. Still, the movie was largely impenetrable to me, so I’m going to have to reserve any judgment.


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