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The Odessa File


If you like your thriller's old fashioned, smart and well acted, you'll love 1974's THE ODESSA FILE, adapted from the novel by Frederick Forsyth (The Day of the Jackal, The Dogs of War).

Jon Voight stars as journalist Peter Miller, who is given the journal of an elderly Jewish man named Salomon Tauber.

As Miller digs into the diary, Tauber's recounting of his time in a concentration camp drives Miller to dig into the whereabouts of the camp commandant Eduard Roschmann, who is very much alive and successful under a new identity.

In seeking Roschmann, Miller uncovers an even bigger secret organization, the Odessa, whose mission is to carry on the failed mission of the Nazis and has members deep in every facet of German life.

Voight is very good as Miller and Maximillian Schell is strong as Roschmann.

Under the direction of Ronald Neame (The Poseidon Adventure) ODESSA takes it's time in unraveling the story. It's a deliberate, smart movie that recaptures the early sixties in a Germany still dealing with its Nazi legacy from just 20 years before.

Watch for the great Derek Jacobi in a small role as a forger and listen for a very rare Andrew Lloyd Webber film score.

If you can accept the film's deliberate pace and slow build, its a worthy thriller, a file worth opening and a solid B.

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