The Two-Headed Spy

Director: Andre de Toth
Screenwriter: Michael Wilson (credited as James O'Donnell)
Starring: Jack Hawkins, Gia Scala, Alexander Knox, Donald Pleasence, Michael Caine
Release details: British Lion Films, UK 1957, 93mins
Full details: IMDb
Genre: True-life wartime drama
Rating: 7 out of 10

Cracking World War II drama featuring the peerless Jack Hawkins as General Schottland, one of the fast rising stars of the Nazi Party, handpicked by Hitler himself to become Head of Supplies for the German Army. But Schottland has dual nationality, having been born and educated in Britain, and is, in fact, feeding secrets on the German war plans to the Allies.

Based on a true story, we follow Schottland's inexorable rise to power during the war. Stock footage with captions (Denmark 1940, Italy 1943, etc) mark the passing of time, which presents the only opporttunity to show how the war is progressing, as most of the film is based in high-ranking offices in Berlin.

Hawkins excels as the decorated WWI hero, who is, to the outside world, "100% National Socialist", but who disagrees with the methods of the Third Reich. Aware that he is under suspicion from his possibly duplicitous girlfriend (Scala) and his ambitious lieutenant, he has to curry favour with his superior officers, persuading them that he is deeply concerned about both espionage within his department and support among officers for a plan to murder Hitler.

In one of his earliest roles, Caine plays one of Hitler's aides.


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