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In 1925 Damascus Harry Smith runs guns to the rebels under Emir Hassan. The French arrest him along with others and force him to sell weapons to them. He develops an interest in French intelligence officer Feroud's mistress Violette. Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
According to actor Jamie Farr, the movie debuted on Saturday night at the Rivoli in his home town of Toledo. Most of Toledo's Arab-American community turned out to see it. As a scene where Bogart walks though a crowded bazaar begins to fade, an Arab voice is heard shouting, "Ya hallah deen bayak!" which caused most of the audience to collapse in laughter. The non-Arabs in the house did not understand why everyone else was laughing until the line was translated for them: "Goddamn your father!" See more »
Toward the end of the film, Col. Feroud walks around with Maj. Leon. Then they stop for a while and Leon takes the cigarette from his mouth with his left hand. In the next shot, he takes the cigarette from mouth again, this time with his right hand. See more »
Last night we arrested one Nasir Saleem, a friend of yours. We have his full confession. The evidence against you is incontrovertible. Do you know the penalty?
Yeah, a slug in the head and a whole in the ground.
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This 1951 Bogart vehicle, produced by the great man himself, and directed by the estimable Curtis Bernhardt, is a slow-moving rehash of some of Bogart's better known films, going back to Casablanca. This one's set in 1925 Syria, with the Trenchcoated One working both sides against the middle. He's a gun runner selling arms to the Arabs, which at the time was illegal, since Syria was controlled by the French. Bogart had an affinity with the Levant, and was most at ease in an occupied city, with terrorists, revolutionaries and criminals,--often hard to tell apart--running around, blowing up things, and making life difficult for the authorities. As usual, Bogart couldn't care less who wins as long as he gets paid.
Sirocco is a back lot picture, yet an attractive one. It was made at a time when movies of its type were getting either a whole lot bigger or a whole lot smaller. As such it was somewhat of an anachronism when it came out, and its box-office was modest. This was really the end of the line for the old-style Bogart pics, which it is the last of; and Bogie's next movie, The African Queen, filmed on location and in color, would open up a whole new career for him. I like this one better than most people do, for its cast (Marta Toren, Lee Cobb, Everett Sloan, Gerald Mohr), and its shabby fatalism. A good deal of the picture is set indoors, in cafés, hotel rooms and warehouses. There is a circular, labyrinthine aspect to the movie, as it seems at times as if all the action were taking place literally underground, with the various characters moving from cavern to cavern.
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