Touch Me Not (1974)

TOUCH ME NOT (1974)
aka The Hunted
Article 4014 by Dave Sindelar
Date: 8-26-2012
Directed by Douglas Fithian
Featuring Lee Remick, Michael Hinz, Ivan Desny
Country: UK / Spain / West Germany / France
What it is: Thriller

Industrial spies send an agent to romance the secretary of an oil magnate while tapping his phone lines. The spy is not above killing to cover his tracks, and when the secretary discovers the truth…

So what does a movie from UK / Spain /West Germany / France look like? Well, if this one is any indication, it looks roughly like one that came from Canada. In fact, given some of the misinformation I’ve encountered with this one, I’m wondering if we’ve got a case of mistaken identity here. My source for this title (John Stanley’s CREATURE FEATURES MOVIE GUIDE STRIKES AGAIN) describes it as a version of THE MOST DANGEROUS GAME. However, beyond the fact that we have someone being stalked by someone else, there is simply no connection between the two movies. In fact, if it weren’t for a left-field plot twist which reveals that one of the characters involved isn’t playing with a full deck (thus throwing a bit of madness into the mix), there wouldn’t be anything here to qualify this one even marginally as genre. As it is, the first two thirds of the movie is dull industrial espionage, mostly highlighted by an interesting performance by Michael Hinz as the savvy industrial spy pretending to be an awkward suitor. The stalking sequence doesn’t come into play until the final third of the movie, and that part of the movie isn’t particularly engaging, either, thanks mostly to dull direction. And I found the twist, as unexpected as it was, actually had the effect of reducing the little suspense there already was. No, there’s little to recommend here.

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