Puppet on a Chain Reviews
"Puppet on a chain" was made and released about two years after its source novel of the same name by Alistair MacLean (first published in 1969). It was MacLean's fourteenth novel and this movie was the seventh film adaptation of one of MacLean's stories. This movie has been on my to see list for a very long time and it was quite of my liking. The famous Swedish musical artist Sven-Bertil Taube is solid as Paul Sherman and he has both the looks and the weight to portray a special agent. I love the slightly psychedelic touch in the film, the setting of lovely Amsterdam, the stunning Barbara Parkins, the action scenes leading up to the intense boat chase along the canals of Amsterdam, the morals of what drugs do to you and the touch of James Bondīs blessing hovering over its villains and plotline. Yes, the acting is maybe a bit wobbly and the green screens emerge every now and then. But, all in all "Puppet on a chain" is definitely ok in my book.
The famous boat chase sequence was directed by Don Sharp who was specifically hired to do it. Once he completed that sequence he was hired by the producers to reshoot additional sequences. Sharp:
The chappie who directed originally [Geoffrey Reeve, who died in 2010] has gone on to produce some nice movies, and before this he had a good career in shooting commercials. And he's a talented man. But he didn't have a story sense then, as a director, and he and his camera operator, each set-up, you know, a sequence that looked like part of a television commercial and wasn't there for the drama of it, or just to let the audience know what was happening. And therefore I had to take parts out of, for example, a nightclub sequence. Seventy-five per cent of it was fine; only when it came to the dialogue bits between them did I have to go in and reshoot it, because it just didn't make sense - to shoot a couple of really good, important dialogue lines to do with the plot in a shot between the legs of a dancer . . . That wasn't exactly it but I mean that sort of thing, you know. It was done for a visual effect.
Sharp said the film went on to make "a mint of money" and claimed in 2007 he was still getting royalties from it being shown on television.
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