The Mackintosh Man

1973 spy thriller

Rating: 14/20

Plot: English intelligence agent Joseph Rearden is recruited by the titular man to pose as a diamond thief in order to be arrested, infiltrate a spy ring, and uncover just who is behind it all.

Not a bad little Huston action thriller although I was pretty confused most of the time. Paul Newman's performance is weird. I'm not sure exactly what his nationality was supposed to be, but he definitely wasn't convincing as an Australian jewel thief as his accent drifts in and out. He's not convincing as an action star either, especially when he's awkwardly punching or kicking people during a big escape scene. Newman sort of goes through the spy motions, and there's no depth to his character. The plot's pretty typical for this sort of thing. A big twist barely seems like a twist at all. There's nothing new with the action scenes although a prison bust-out sequence is nifty and a car chase, mostly because of the locale and the vehicles involved, is fun. I liked Maurice Jarre's repetitive score, reminiscent of the zither madness in The Third Man. I had trouble identifying the instrument, but it was something atypical, and I liked how the music felt free to just stomp in whenever it wanted to.

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