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Cloak and Dagger

Screening on Film
Recently Restored
Directed by Fritz Lang.
With Gary Cooper, Lilli Palmer, Robert Alda.
US, 1946, 35mm, black & white, 102 min.
Print source: UCLA

Released more than a year after V-J Day, Fritz Lang's final anti-Nazi film follows Gary Cooper’s improbable nuclear scientist into war-torn Europe on a secret mission for the OSS. “The opposite of a James Bond,” writes Enno Patalas, “Cooper stumbles through a hostile world.” The character’s transformation from noble-minded rationalist to a realpolitik hero culminates in a remarkably brutal scene of hand-to-hand combat with a fascist agent. Lang would later complain that Warner Bros. excised his preferred ending of Cooper uncovering an abandoned Nazi bomb factory: a strikingly paranoid vision of the nuclear threat cut to fit the emerging Cold War era. 

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