Circle of Deception


1h 40m 1961

Brief Synopsis

British intelligence decides to mislead the Nazis by having an agent feed them misinformation (unbeknownst to him) after being tortured.

Film Details

Also Known As
Destruction Test
Release Date
Jan 1961
Premiere Information
Saint Louis opening: 8 Feb 1961
Production Company
Twentieth Century--Fox Film Corp.
Country
United Kingdom
Screenplay Information
Based on the short story "Small Back Room in St. Marylebone" by Alec Waugh in Esquire (Mar 1953).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 40m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
2.35 : 1

Synopsis

In 1945, shortly before the Allied invasion of Europe, British Intelligence formulates a plan for outwitting the Germans in occupied France. Selecting an officer, they will deliberately give him false information and parachute him into Normandy on the theory that, if captured, he will crack under torture and reveal what he knows. The ruse can only succeed, however, if the officer believes that his mission is real. After lengthy psychological testing, Paul Raine, a young Canadian, is chosen for the job by the Intelligence chief, Captain Rawson. Partially responsible for the selection is Lieut. Lucy Bowen, who, though in love with Paul and opposed to the inhuman maneuver, reluctantly agrees with the decision. Everything works as planned; once in France, Paul is captured by the Gestapo, imprisoned, and relentlessly tortured. When close to the breaking point, he bites down on the cyanide pellet concealed in his hollow tooth. However, Rawson has seen to it that the capsule contains no poison; Paul "breaks" and tells the Germans everything. A short time later the French underground storms the prison and Paul is freed. Tortured with the thought that he betrayed his country, he flees to Tangiers and takes refuge in alcohol. As he hovers on the brink of suicide, Lucy finds him, tells him the truth, and restores his will to live.

Film Details

Also Known As
Destruction Test
Release Date
Jan 1961
Premiere Information
Saint Louis opening: 8 Feb 1961
Production Company
Twentieth Century--Fox Film Corp.
Country
United Kingdom
Screenplay Information
Based on the short story "Small Back Room in St. Marylebone" by Alec Waugh in Esquire (Mar 1953).

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 40m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
2.35 : 1

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

Location scenes filmed in France. Opened in London in January 1961. The working title of this film is Destruction Test. Cutting continuity lists David Palmer in the role of "small boy," while other sources credit Hennie Scott.

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States February 8, 1961

Released in United States Winter December 30, 1960

CinemaScope

Released in United States Winter December 30, 1960

Released in United States February 8, 1961