The Quiet American - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Quiet American Reviews

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½ April 13, 2018
one-dimensional characters, and is too ominous for all its ambition.
December 30, 2017
An "American slant" on the French colonial occupation. Read the book instead. Audie Murphy isn't a very good actor. Redgrave is wonderful.
½ November 12, 2016
Wordy. If only Audie Murphy had been allowed to be actually romantic! No-one in this film shows any genuine feelings of affection. Make that, any genuine feelings full-stop!
April 23, 2016
Outstanding. MUST WATCH. Caine is spell binding. Fraser does well to keep up. Greene at this best.
July 25, 2013
Mankiewicz (who also wrote the adapted screenplay) does a fine job balancing romance, intrigue and war.
Super Reviewer
February 27, 2013
Adequate version of Greene's story no more. Redgrave is good though.
Super Reviewer
½ October 11, 2012
An American steals a cynical British reporter's Vietnamese girlfriend against the backdrop of international intrigue during the French occupation of Vietnam.
Once again, Joseph L. Mankiewicz knows how to tell a good story. The characters are all finely drawn, and though the typical Mankiewicz strategies of flashbacks and voice-overs get tired and over-used, the typical Mankiewicz theme of attempting to maintain one's integrity never gets old. In this iteration of Mankiewicz's oeuvre, a British reporter cares about nothing but his own interests and his own happiness, but the rhetoric of selflessness challenges his worldview. The dramatic question of whether or not he would rise to higher concerns than his own interests is quite compelling.
The remake with Michael Caine is better than the original because it's truer to Graham Greene's novel, but this is certainly a noble effort.
Overall, this is a compelling story and a strong film with great performances.
½ August 22, 2012
Largely faithful adaptation of Greene's great novel, apart from the ending, and an effective political thriller.
June 7, 2012
I want to see this movie
September 16, 2010
They don't make 'em like they used to...movies with actual STORIES!
July 10, 2010
Featuring a love triangle that is somewhat flat, there is some entertainment value in the conversational interplay between the two suitors.

Against a backdrop of Indo-China warfare, with French colonial forces battling Communists, the film is set in Saigon and features authentic feeling backdrops.

I read of some contention that the book this is based on is delivered more true to word with the more modern making of the film, which I will see in due course.

It may be that I agree with the sentiment expressed and thus see this film in lesser light, but time will tell that tale.
½ June 21, 2009
Just dreadful. One would hope that Audie Murphy would have developed some acting skills by 1958. The ending is just appalling and reinforces my principle of never seeing a movie based on something I enjoyed reading.
January 27, 2009
Batallas pasionales se desencadenan durante las guerras una película muy correcta visualmente se ve plácidamente
½ January 6, 2009
I wanted to see this because I had really liked the remake with Michael Caine. With this version, though, I found all the acting stilted and Graham Greene's anti-colonial view get glossed over by moralization. That is too bad. Especially considering what was going on in Vietnam at the time and what was still to come. This movie could have been a trailblazer. I would much rather watch the remake with Michael Caine.
November 23, 2008
Oh, the film that might have been. An intelligent story that unfortunately is brought down in the tacked-on, colonialist ending. Granted, this was 1958 and it was highly unlikely that a producer like Mankiewicz would produce a film critical of America and France's involvement in Vietnam, but there was always hope that someone would be brave enough to see the writing on the wall. The film rolls along very nicely, with fine performances by the leads. Audie Murphy's All-American Boy gets on my nerves, but then I was prepared for a later puncturing of the image, having seen the excellent version with Michael Caine and Brendan Fraser. Alas, it was not to be. Instead, poor Mike Redgrave suffers a thousand times over, condemned (I think a little unfairly) for his jealousy and betrayal. The ending is rather uncomfortable, especially considering the actual political affiliations of those involved with the production, and Graham Greene's anti-colonialist message is lost in a morass of self-serving moralizing. For a more faithful version, see the one with Caine.
September 20, 2008
Saigon, 1952: As the Indochina war between the French and the Viet Minh rages on a middle aged journalist and a young American via for the affections of a Vietnamese woman whilst being drawn deeper into the struggle. Excellent look at the conflict between cynicism (as personified by Michael Redgraves journalist) and idealism (Audie Murphys American), and SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER in the end those who espouse cynicism can be just as naive as the idealist. Great film.
May 30, 2008
very very good. i really i'll have to read the book.
½ March 18, 2008
I didn't like this film.
January 22, 2008
I want to see this movie
December 3, 2007
this movie is great, and i hated the dumb american. there is a snooty british guy, which i always enjoy, and he has hates the dumb american too.
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