Berlin Express (1948)

Berlin Express (1948), directed by Jacques Tourneur.

A multi-national set of travelers try to find a missing German diplomat. Set in that post-war period just before the Cold War, when Germans were still suspect and Soviets not (quite) yet the enemy.

This teeters on the edge of being a good movie but never quite makes it. A few good scenes and some stunning location shots of bombed-out Frankfurt and Berlin. Marred by way too much voice-over narration, clumsy plotting, and a syrupy give-peace-a-chance message, subtle as a hammer.

Robert Ryan is my favorite actor, but he really can't save this. He's just "the American character." I can't tell if Merle Oberon is supposed to be German or French. Not much chemistry.

The IMDB score for this is 7.0, which is generous. It's probably for Ryan, Tourneur, and writer Curt Siodmak.

Warner Archive title, available for rent from ClassicFlix.