Excellent news, watched this recently Dolores Hart gave an especially fine performance.
For fans of this 1962 British CinemaScope and colour production from 20th Century-Fox, which hasn't been run on UK television since 1975, there may be a chance that Fox Home Video in the US may be releasing a remastered widescreen DVD of it in the near future. I have just seen it listed on amazon.com asking customers if they want to be notified when it's available. I understand that a beautiful, remastered 2.35:1 print has recently been run on the Fox Movie Channel in the States, so it seems as though a DVD release can't be far behind.
This is one of my most favourite British films from the early 1960's and all I have of it is an audio cassette recording I did of it off ITV 34 years ago. For those who have never seen it, the film stars Stephen Boyd; Dolores Hart; Marius Goring; Harry Andrews; Donald Pleasance; Finlay Currie; Leo McKern; Hugh Griffith; Geoffrey Keen; Robert Stephens; Jean Anderson and Jack Gwillim. It also has a wonderful score by Malcolm Arnold...one of his most haunting and beautiful.
In 1945, just after the war in Europe has ended, a Dutch police inspector saves a Jewish refugee girl, a survivor of a Nazi concentration camp, from the clutches of a Nazi white slaver and risks his life helping her to realise her dream of illegally entering Palestine, which was then being blockaded by the British, because, although she has never been to Palestine, she feels that she belongs there.
Beautifully acted and filmed. A four-star tear-jerker of the highest order. If it is going to be released on DVD at long last, I'd much prefer it to be released in this country under its original British title The Inspector. But I suppose a US Region 1 release under its US title Lisa will be better than not being able to see it at all.
Excellent news, watched this recently Dolores Hart gave an especially fine performance.
THE INSPECTOR (1962)
A Neglected British Classic.
Based on the novel of the same name by Dutch writer Jan De Hartog, The Inspector is set in 1946. Post-war Europe is in turmoil and packed with refugees and Peter Jongman (Stephen Boyd), a Dutch police inspector tortured by his failure to prevent his late fiancee Rachel being thrown into a Nazi concentration camp, follows Thorens (Marius Goring) a Nazi white slaver, to London. Thorens specialises in luring homeless girls out of Holland with the promise of a better life, only to find that they end up in a South American brothel.
Peter saves a Jewish girl, Lisa Held (Dolores Hart), who strongly resembles Rachel, from Thorens, but in a fight accidentally kills the Nazi. Lisa, a rare survivor of the medical experimentation block at Auschwitz, has one abiding aim…to get to Palestine, which was then being blockaded by the British. To try and atone for his failure to save Rachel from a Nazi death camp, Peter, knowing it will mean imprisonment for him and the end of his police career if he is caught, gives Lisa his word that he will help her get to Palestine.
The two head for Holland and Captain Brandt (Leo McKern), a breezy, Bible-quoting bargee in Amsterdam, agrees to take them across the border into Belgium on his barge, the Hendrika. Peter falls desperately in love with Lisa, but she, wrongly believing that her treatment at the hands of the Nazi death camp doctors has made it impossible for her to have sexual relations with a man, hysterically resists his gentle advances. Eventually, Peter and Lisa arrive in Tangier and Van Der Pink (Hugh Griffith), a renegade Dutchman, agrees, at a price, to get them through the British blockade of Palestine. Roger Dickens (Robert Stephens), a British naval intelligence officer, tries to persuade Peter to give himself up, but he has no intention of doing so until he has kept his promise to Lisa. To prevent further harassment by the British, Peter makes a bargain with Dickens. If he will turn a blind eye to Lisa reaching Palestine, then he will surrender himself to the British authorities. Dickens agrees and Peter and Lisa board a gun-runner owned by Captain Ayoob (Harry Andrews), an artful Arab and Lisa at last returns Peter’s love for her.
During the sea voyage, Ayoob’s boat is attacked by rival gun runners who, after a fierce battle, are driven off, but not before Lisa is badly injured. Peter carries the wounded Lisa onto the beach, where they are met by a Haganah patrol. In a truly heartbreaking scene, Lisa is lifted out of Peter’s arms and placed on top of a tank and driven off into Palestine, the two realising they will probably never see each other again. She little realises that Peter has traded his freedom for her safety.
The Inspector is a wonderful film, superbly acted; directed and photographed (in CinemaScope and colour) and with one of Malcolm Arnold’s very best scores. I highly recommend it to all those who have never seen it.
ABOVE: Kine Weekly, July 20th, 1961. Amsterdam was just the first location for Mark Robson’s production The Inspector. Here, director Philip Dunne is sitting on a Dutch barge with star Dolores Hart. Now, they’re shooting at MGM, Elstree and soon, the unit goes to Tangier to finish the film.
ABOVE: Kine Weekly, October 5th, 1961. Perched above the ship’s side is director Philip Dunne. Clambering between the stays is photographer Arthur Ibbotson. This is how they looked when they went to sea off the Welsh coast on the “Madre Dolorosa” to film location scenes for Mark Robson’s production The Inspector.
BELOW: The two cover versions of the theme music that were released on 45 rpm singles in the UK in June, 1962. No actual soundtrack recordings of Malcolm Arnold's score have ever been released.
Stephen Boyd as Peter Jongman, the Dutch policeman in The Inspector, who, haunted by and unable to forget the way he allowed the Nazis to deport and murder his fiancee during the war, personally helps a Jewish girl, Lisa Held (Dolores Hart in her penultimate film before she gave up acting and entered a convent) get to, and illegally into, Palestine, falling desperately in love with her as he carries out his good deed. The scenes, like the one illustrated above, on board the canal barge “Hendrika” as it traveled through Holland, were some of the best things in this Mark Robson CinemaScope picture for Twentieth Century-Fox.
BELOW: Some original Front-of-House stills from the film. To enlarge all these stills, left click with mouse on white bar over the top of each image.
Some great clips there Darrenburnfan. This is a fine film imo & one of my favourites. Stephen Boyd & Dolores Hart remained very close friends right up to his death. She of course became a nun not long after this film was made.
Thanks, Wadsy. I know many people will associate Stephen Boyd with his role in Ben-Hur, and he was excellent in all his films. But for me, The Inspector was his best role. I thought it was a wonderful film when I first saw it as a fifteen year old in 1962 and it still retains the power that it had then. Malcolm Arnold, who's score for this is hauntingly beautiful, once said that music is very important to a film and he was right. I know that younger members of the forum will be scratching their heads about The Inspector, never having heard of it.
I much prefer Stephen Boyd in this to most of his other films. He seemed to get typecast later in his career as a Hollywood tough guy & there was much more to him than that.
I recall seeing this in 1962, and remember that the print was weak and a a bit muddy - a common problem with so called 'De Luxe color' at the time..........
De Luxe Color was merely Eastman Colour processed by De Luxe laboratories in the States. My guess is that British prints would have been processed in Eastman Colour at either Rank or Bucks laboratories, while keeping the Color by De Luxe trademark on the actual prints. I know that the British prints were on Eastman Colour stock, as I have a couple of 35mm frames from The Inspector that are 48 years old and the colour on them has now turned to pink. A sure sign of Eastman Colour, as Technicolor doesn't fade. Maybe the print you saw wasn't presented properly Julian, or the cinema had the arc lamp on reduced power to save money. As I remember it, the colours in 1962 looked about the same as on the preserved print that was shown on the Fox Movie Channel, examples of which can be seen in my first post above.
darrenburnfan, do you happen to know if De Luxe was an offshoot of Twentieth Century-Fox, as "Color by De Luxe" seemed to first appear on their films (in the 50s, I think)?
Great work on this thread DBF, I agree this is a neglected gem of a film. I must confess I had never seen it until recently, and thoroughly enjoying it. The two leads were excellent especially the fragile beauty of Delores Hart.
the cinema had the arc lamp on reduced power to save money.....
This now seems to be a common practice for sparsely attended matinees - another reason I have stopped going to the cinema ! My TV set gives a brighter, more vibrant picture........
Well, Gerald, it seems that Color by De Luxe started appearing first on 20th Century-Fox films around 1954 with King Of The Khyber Rifles (credited on screen as being in Color by Technicolor - De Luxe), so maybe they owned the processing laboratories. Some United Artists CinemaScope films of the late 1950's (such as Comanche) also had the Color by De Luxe credit on their colour films.
Thanks, Harbottle. I'm glad I'm not the only one who remembers it with affection...and also for that brilliant scene where Hugh Griffith swats bats with a tennis racket as they fly into his hotel room at night. "Thirty love! Forty love! Advantage Van der Pink! Ahhhhh, game, set and match!"Originally Posted by Harbottle
Thanks for the interesting and informative posts darrenburnfan.
I did not recognize the title at first because I know it as Lisa. It definitely looks like the sort of film I would enjoy.
Thanks, Tim. As far as I know, it has been run a few times in the States on the Fox Movie Channel (as Lisa). I don't think it will ever be run on television in this country again, unless Film 4 decide to run it.