Classic British restraint, humour and stiff upper-lip, plus a great cast, bring lots of chuckles in this blend of fact and fiction about an improbable but real wartime event in 1943.
The farfetched plan is to find a corpse, dress it up as a Royal Marine officer carrying misleading military documents with information that the Allied forces were about to invade Greece, when they were actually invading Sicily.
The corpse was to be delivered by submarine to a beach in Spain where it was anticipated that the information would find its way to German intelligence.
With world history hanging in the balance Winston Churchill approved the scenario and it was hoped that the misinformation would break Hitler’s hold on occupied Europe.
The challenge for MI5 officer Ewen Montagu (Colin Firth) and RAF officer Charles Cholmondeley (Matthew Maefadyn) and their team was to find the right corpse and invent the biography of the man he was to represent. Author Ian Flemming sits typing in the background as an observer, quietly writing notes for a novel.
It was adapted by Michelle Ashford from a book by Ben Macintyre and directed by John Madden (Shakespeare in Love. The Best Marigold Hotel) and the film has a rather heavy at times musical score by Thomas Newman.
It is an amazing WW11 true story, and a thriller, made with good period detail. But there is a bit of unnecessary romance between Ewen and team member Jean (Kelly Macdonald) thrown in – and it is too long, at well over two hours.
Showing at Event Cinema Innaloo, and Windsor Nedlands.
Watch the trailer…