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The Odessa File [DVD]

4.3 out of 5 stars 117 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Jon Voight, Maximilian Schell, Maria Schell, Mary Tamm, Derek Jacobi
  • Directors: Ronald Neame
  • Writers: Frederick Forsyth, George Markstein, Kenneth Ross
  • Producers: John R. Sloan, John Woolf
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English, German
  • Subtitles: French, German, Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Hindi, Turkish, Danish, Arabic, English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: UCA
  • DVD Release Date: 8 Mar. 2004
  • Run Time: 124 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (117 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005Q8UO
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,008 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Germany, the early 1960s. Investigative journalist Peter Miller (Jon Voight) has obtained a diary detailing crimes committed by SS Captain Eduard Roschmann (Maximilian Schell) when he was a WWII concentration camp commandant. Miller sets out to bring Roschmann to justice, but encounters trouble when he comes up against 'Odessa', a secret organisation dedicated to protecting former SS officers and advancing their position in the post-war world.

From Amazon.co.uk

Originally released in 1974, The Odessa File is set in Hamburg a decade earlier. Its starting-point is the Nazi support network Odessa, and its involvement with Egyptian plans to destroy Israel. Peter Miller is a freelance journalist whose interest appears initially to be a professional one, before a personal dimension finally becomes apparent in his confrontation with SS Captain Roschmann.

Kenneth Ross adapts a well-honed screenplay from Frederick Forsyth's bestseller, and director Ronald Neame captures a typically Cold War sense of individuals and organisations playing out a scenario of political right and wrong. John Voight, long before he became a cameo star, makes a sympathetic lead, able to judge between the moral and material aspects of his profession. Mary Tamm is photogenic, if uninvolving, as his girlfriend, while Maximillian Schell is a convincing Nazi stereotype. Andrew Lloyd-Weber contributes a serviceable score, centred on the catchy "Christmas Dream" sung by Perry Como. Not a classic suspense thriller, but an enjoyable and thoughtful one.

On the DVD: the letterbox widescreen format preserves the 2.35:1 aspect ratio of the cinema release with decent if not exceptional clarity, with optional 16:9 TV enhancement. There are French, German, Italian and Spanish overdubs, and subtitles in 21 languages. Detailed filmographies for Neame, Voight and Schell are included and the theatrical trailer is to the point in a way they so rarely are these days. --Richard Whitehouse

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Saturnicus VINE VOICE on 28 May 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
What a wonderful star studded cast. I saw this film when first released - yes that was a long time ago - and the memory of it has lingered. It is superbly atmospheric, the music is outstanding, and the story enthralling. It is great to see so many famous names as they were thirty-plus years ago years ago and how well they have done in between. To the younger generation it is probably nothing more than history, but to my generation it was relevant. They do not make them like this nowadays.

If you have not seen it, then watch it.
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Format: DVD
I was told that after seeing "Day of the Jackel" that I had to see this movie, and it did not dissapoint any way or form!!! (I actually prefer it to "Day of the Jackel" now)

A really gripping story that really easy to follow, with a great twist at the end which I never saw comming.

Starts off pretty slow and we are not sure what we are actually suppose to be watching, but then once it develops everything falls into place and the movie turns into a really gripping film.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The Odessa File [DVD] [1974]

The widescreen version is not available stateside, so this is a great chance to see a film that really suffers from the pan and scan treatment. A non-regional player is a must, of course.

The music plays with your head, too. You'll never hear Perry Como and the 'Christmas Dream' song the same way again after listening to it in its first context as this movie's theme. And who would have thought Webber and Rice would have composed and written the score and song lyrics for such a dark thriller. Und die deutschen/Nazi kinder...ausgezeichnet!

Lots of fun and surprises. Merry Christmas, indeed.
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Format: Blu-ray
bad reviews on here are because of the shoddy dvd that this was on. This blu ray looks outstanding! Image has released some bad blu rays but this isn't one of them. The storyline is a good one about post war nazis and it takes place in 1963. The movie was made in 1974 though and you wouldn't know it! by then germany was very much rebuilt, unlike 1963 or older. A very young mary tamm is in this one, she went on to make many films and tv appearances right up to 2009 , when she got cancer and she just recently died. rip. She aged very well too. But here we catch joh voight at his hieght of stardom still. He is excellent and really carries this movie well. There was a real odessa of course and the group did smuggle nazis to freedom. This makes this all the more of a good story here. Max shell is in here too and he is never anything but great so this should appeal to drama and conspiracy fans too. The blu ray is worth every penny too. with movies this old you just never know how it's going to look. this one will make you happy.
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Another great Frederick Forsyth adaption good story and as always with Forsyth impeccably researched does anyone remember the tv segment he did about identity fraud and how easy it was to become someone else? Anyway back to Odessa a very low key movie slowly gathering momentum yet never dragging on.Then there's the contrast between the cheery christmas tune Perry Como I think
and the sinister insidious goings on in the background and how innocently Jon Voight becomes embroiled with the deadly Odessa.
This is a fine 70's movie which unfairly basks in the shadow of the also brilliant Day of the Jackal,which got a dreadful remake some years back anyone remake Odessa? second thought maybe not!!!
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By Bernie VINE VOICE on 11 Aug. 2005
Format: DVD
I am glad I did not read the book first as this film has to tell the story minus many of the sub plots. However there are enough left to keep you well off balance. If it is your first time through the movie some of the plots are evasive.
It is definitely a Forsyth story with a good mixture of fact, myth, and plausibility. Well it could happen. The film is permeated with rising action; in several places you have no time to catch your breath. You will find your self kibitzing as "Don't make that phone call!"
The story was best told with black and white flashbacks to explain what happened in history to support today's (1974) action.
Reporter, Peter Miller comes in possession of a diary of a man that survived Riga concentration camp. Something he reads encourages him to seek SS Captain Eduard Roschmann, the commandant of the camp, who was presumed dead. In his endeavor he is thwarted at every turn by the authorities. Finally one posing as a doctor confirms Roshmann's existence by his very insistent that Roschmann is dead.
In the beginning we hear of President Kennedy's death which triggers the end of innocents. This combined with the overlapping plot of the Egyptians to build missiles, overlays Peter's personal pursuit with that of a Jewish organization attempting to infiltrate the Odessa (Organisation der ehemaligen SS-Angehörigen),an organization to reorganize and protect prominent people that where in the "National Socialist German Workers' Party".
Will Peter succeed with his mission (what ever it is) or will he be hindered by the Jewish organization? Will the organization succeed in thwarting the Egyptian missile plot or be hindered by Peter? Is SS Captain Roschmann still alive and if so what is he up to.
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