Available on DVD !
To buy, click on link(s) below and help keep this site afloat
Always make sure of DVD-compatibility !!!
Jobless journalist Paul Kenyon (Robert Paige) resides in post war
Tangier to track down Nazi villain Balazar - for a story that will get him
back on the good side with his paper. His trail leads him right to
temperamental dancer Rita (Maria Montez), and even though the two of them
won't admit it, they fall in love at first sight. She plays a key figure
in tracking down Balazar though, as she and her two partners Ramon (Kent
Taylor) and Dolores (Louise Allbritton) are also on Balazar's trail - and
a lot closer than Kenyon is - because he shot their parents in Spain and
now they want revenge.
Then though a murder happens, a former Nazi spy
(Reginald Denny) who's in league with Balazar, and Kenyon, Rita, Ramon and
Dolores are all shipped off to the police station to be questioned - not
so much because of the murder but because of the diamond the deceased has
been carrying that has now gone missing. Ramon and Rita have an alibi
though, they were dancing on stage - but were they?
No, of course not,
Dolores had doubled for Rita while she dashed off to steal the diamond,
and during the dance, Ramon slipped backstage just long enough to kill the
spy. Despite her alibi, and despite the fact that he has fallen in love
with Rita, the chief of police Artiego (Preston Foster) still is
suspicious of Rita, but of course he can't pin anything on her, and she's
clever enough to always hide the diamond from him. She can fool everybody
it seems ... everybody but Kenyon that is, but as mentioned before, he's
on her side and he's in love with her.
Eventually, Rita finds a trail
directly to Balazar, and while Dolores doubles for her on stage once more,
she plans to kill him. But when she faces Rocco (J.Edward Brombert), the
guy she believes to be Balazar, she finds him prepared, and soon finds
herself unarmed. In the meantime, Kenyon, Ramon, Dolores, Rita and captain
Artiego all find out where she has gone and dash to her rescue ... but
after Rocco is disarmed, suddenly everyone finds himself at the mercy of
captain Artiego, who now turns out to be the real Balazar, and after he
has forced the diamond out of Rita after all, he tries to make a getaway
with Dolores, who has caught his eye ... but she sees to it that he
crashes in an elevator, even if it costs her own life as well.
end, Kenyon and Rita fly to the USA together. They have returned the
diamond to Rocco, its rightful owner so to speak and actually a
Nazi-hunter, but Kenyon has the story of his lifetime in his hands ...
Montez' frequent co-star Sabu plays a naive nightclub singer here, but his
character has no narrative function.
In equal parts crime and
espionage story and escapist fare one has come to expect from Maria
Montez, Tangier comes across a bit like a poor man's Casablanca
- with quite entertaining results: On one hand, the movie's film noir
atmosphere is pretty appealing and one can't but admit it's elegantly
filmed, on the other, the story, albeit convoluted, is endlessly naive and
simplistic, and despite involving then current events seems to take place
out of space and time. And good and evil is always clearly distinguishable
(quite unlike in proper film noirs).
Of course, in terms of quality, the
film is nowhere near Casablanca,
as it lacks the directorial subtlety, the great actors, and the clever
script, and it's probably not even a film you'll remember for long (again,
unlike Casablanca - but it's
actually fun while it lasts at least ...