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The Odessa File (1974)

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2:01 | Trailer
Following the suicide of an elderly Jewish man, a journalist in possession of the man's diary investigates the alleged sighting of a former S.S. Captain, who commanded a concentration camp during World War II.

Director:

Ronald Neame

Writers:

Frederick Forsyth (based on the novel by), Kenneth Ross (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jon Voight ... Peter Miller
Maximilian Schell ... Eduard Roschmann
Maria Schell ... Frau Miller
Mary Tamm ... Sigi
Derek Jacobi ... Klaus Wenzer
Peter Jeffrey ... David Porath
Klaus Löwitsch ... Gustav Mackensen
Kurt Meisel ... Alfred Oster
Hannes Messemer ... General Glücks
Garfield Morgan ... Israeli General
Shmuel Rodensky ... Simon Wiesenthal (as Schmuel Rodensky)
Ernst Schröder Ernst Schröder ... Werner Deilman
Günter Strack Günter Strack ... Kunik (as Gunter Strack)
Noel Willman ... Franz Bayer
Martin Brandt ... Marx
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Storyline

After reading the diary of an elderly Jewish man who committed suicide, freelance journalist Peter Miller begins to investigate the alleged sighting of a former S.S. Captain who commanded a concentration camp during World War II. Miller eventually finds himself involved with the powerful organization of former S.S. members, called "O.D.E.S.S.A.", as well as with the Israeli secret service. Miller probes deeper and eventually discovers a link between the S.S. Captain, "O.D.E.S.S.A.", and his own family. Written by Anthony Hughes <husnock31@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

From the smash suspense novel of the year. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | West Germany

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

18 October 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Akta Odessy See more »

Filming Locations:

Salzburg, Austria See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)| Black and White (flashback scenes)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jon Voight was on-set throughout the production, with the script calling for his being on-camera in eighty percent of the scenes. The production notes stated the part was (at least at the time) perhaps Voight's "most grueling role". Welcome respite on the set included regular visits from his wife Marcheline Bertrand and their infant son, Jamie, who was the "pet" of the cast and crew. See more »

Goofs

The Mercedes 600 used by Eduard Roschmann was in fact revealed in 1963 but started production in 1965. See more »

Quotes

Peter Miller: [Peter Miller's first lines; he pulls to the curb after hearing about the assassination of John F. Kennedy on the radio] Events that can change history sometimes hang on tiny chances. If I hadn't pulled to the curb, I wouldn't have caught the traffic light, nor seen the ambulance, never have heard of Salomon Tauber or Eduard Roschmann. Nor got involved with the agents of Israel, or with the sinister and deadly men behind the Odessa. That night I was just a reporter with a nose for a possible ...
See more »

Alternate Versions

West German TV version was edited to remove the text at the beginning (which provides background information) and flashback scenes of Roschmann's atrocities in the KZ. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Passions of Carol (1975) See more »

Soundtracks

Schwarzbraun ist die Haselnuss
("Black Brown is the hazelnut") (uncredited)
Tradtional
[Sung at the soldiers' reunion]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Terrific story and cast - a classic
5 November 2012 | by phd_travelSee all my reviews

This thriller should go down as a classic. It has a convincing story a rare thing in movies that try to blend historical fact and fiction. It's tense from beginning to end and doesn't have annoying red herrings or plot twists.

The casting is perfect. Maximillian Schell is ideal as the Nazi war criminal. Jon Voight is surprisingly convincing as a German accent and all. Good use of European supporting cast to avoid a fake feel.

Good on location feel to it. Liked the evocative score too.

It's one of the best thrillers about WWII subject matter even though it is set after the war.


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