The Liquidator


Action / Comedy

IMDb Rating 5.9


Downloaded 571 times
6/27/2020 2:42:08 PM

105 min
P/S 0 / 0

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by blanche-2 6

Rod Taylor is &quot;The Liquidator&quot; -- well, his superiors think he is, anyway -- in this 1965 spoof of the spy genre, directed by Jack Cardiff.<br/><br/>The &#39;60s was certainly an interesting time for films - spy films, spoofs of spy films, caper films, big historical films, and sex comedies. Here we have a spoof of the James Bond films, with Rod Taylor playing Boys Oaks, a war acquaintance of Colonel Mostyn (Trevor Howard). The British Security Services is frustrated and embarrassed as they have a number of spies in their midst. It&#39;s time to liquidate them, so The Chief (Wilfrid Hyde-White) orders Mostyn to find someone.<br/><br/>Mostyn remembers Boys and his impressive actions during the war and drafts him. Of course, he doesn&#39;t exactly tell Boys what he wants. He offers him a gorgeous apartment, beautiful women who hang around, a nice car, and after Boys signs his life away, Mostyn drops the bomb. Boys tries but he fails in his first assignment and instead saves the subject from the train tracks he was just about to throw her onto. The other thing is all the travel - Boys really doesn&#39;t like to travel. So Boyd has to come up with a solution or lose the perks.<br/><br/>I thought this was an okay comedy, nothing special. Jill St. John plays Mostyn&#39;s beautiful, sexy secretary, Wilfrid Hyde-White plays the bureau chief; the film also features Akim Tamiroff. There are some funny moments and I like the premise. Entertaining.

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Reviewed by sataft-2 8

One reviewer here wrote that this film was a poor excursion for the lead actor, Rod Taylor. I do honestly believe it to be one of his best comedy outings in his career. True, the film does lag a bit about two thirds of the way through, but its premise is solid.<br/><br/>One simply has to regard the film in the light of the the times it represents; which is the social environment of the late 1940&#39;s to the mid 1970&#39;s when the Cold War eventually ended. And one has to have some sense of how the Cold War era was, in itself, an exercise in the futility of bringing a major war to an end on a slow boil.<br/><br/>Therefore, I regard such claims as it not being humorous, or a lame attempt at such, being the inability of someone too young to have experienced the times.<br/><br/>Keep in mind that my generation (born in 1939) participated in &#39;take-cover&#39; drills in our elementary classrooms, as serious protection from a nuclear bomb blast.<br/><br/>When given the signal, we kids were instructed to dive under our classroom desks, and to cover our heads with our hands until the all clear was given.<br/><br/>In reality, if the bomb was indeed dropped anywhere nearby, all &#39;take -cover would have accomplished was to yield - all gone! Yes, it was taken seriously by just about everyone.<br/><br/>Knowing this, it is easily understood why actual spy agencies on our side, and behind the Iron Curtain countries actually generated such extremes as history reveals of this era - as serious exercises.<br/><br/>Knowing this, simply sit back, relax your serious muscles, expose your humor muscles and enjoy this delightful film in the vein it was intended.

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Reviewed by Hugorelly 7

All the elements seem to be in place to make The Liquidator a success: a witty script, a strong cast, an over-the-top Shirley Bassey theme song, crisp cinematography in glorious 1960s Technicolor. But having said that, the whole package doesn&#39;t quite come off.<br/><br/>The basic idea is a clever one: to take the familiar secret agent movie premise and subvert it by making the central character a reluctant assassin who &quot;wouldn&#39;t hurt a fly&quot;. The problem is, Rod Taylor is just too &quot;straight&quot; for the role. Like the Royal Air Force&#39;s new top secret spy plane, Taylor often seems to be running on automatic pilot.<br/><br/>The comic elements here should have been exploited for much greater effect. Comparisons with Connery&#39;s James Bond are wide of the mark, since this film does not aspire to match the serious thrill quotient of a Bond movie. But it does contain some delicious irony, and a couple of neat twists that even surpass the usual formula at times. <br/><br/>The scene in which Taylor, imprisoned in a cellar with his captor&#39;s floozy, is openly encouraged to escape, is neatly handled - until the poor girl is needlessly gunned down by another member of the gang to &quot;silence&quot; her. This provokes a cliff-top chase that culminates in a dangling moment of rare high tension, evoking the original Italian Job.<br/><br/>Younger fans of the Austin Powers series may enjoy seeing what actual swinging &#39;60s films were really like. But where Mike Myers&#39; films take the tiniest germ of a funny idea and magnify it over and over, The Liquidator does the reverse: a potentially promising humorous situation tends just to be left hanging in the air.<br/><br/>For connoisseurs of British pictures of the period, there are little treats on offer too, in the appearance of familiar faces like Trevor Howard, Eric Sykes, Wilfred Hyde White and Richard Wattis - although again, their talent is mostly wasted. The delightful Jill St. John (who would go on to do the &quot;real thing&quot; in Diamonds Are Forever) is eminently watchable throughout, and her performance raises the whole tone; indeed she and Howard are the best things on view here.<br/><br/>Overall then, whilst The Liquidator is certainly an enjoyable film, with the right leading actor, or perhaps a director with a keener eye for comic possibilities, it could have been a much funnier romp through contemporary spy film clichés. So while it must go down as something of a missed opportunity, for me it&#39;s better fun than Casino Royale - either the new version or the 1967 one.

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