A U.S. naval engineer (Joseph Cotten) on assignment in Turkey is targeted for murder by Nazi agents. To save his life, the head of the Turkish secret police (Orson Welles) smuggles him out of the country on a cargo ship. But the Nazis are one step ahead. They already have at least one assassin on board the ship, disguised as one of the passengers...
Good atmosphere, and a few good moments, but overall surprisingly bad
- Journey Into Fear review by MS
Considering how good the cast is, 'Journey into Fear' is surprisingly bad. The plot is badly worked out -- a major flaw for a suspense film, and the characters aren't developed, either. It's very short -- but still tedious. Potentially interesting characters are introduced, only to be immediately dropped. And the story is so undeveloped, it just isn't convincing, even in its own terms. There are a few well-shot Hitchcock-esque atmospheric scenes -- particularly of the assassin -- but it ain't Hitchcock.
Given the cast and the Eric Ambler book on which it is based, "Journey into Fear" disappoints throughout, and even the great Orson Welles struggles to give a convincing performance. Joseph Cotton underwhelms. Some good camera work but overall a boring film that fails to hold your attention.