Hidden Fear (1957)

83 mins | Mystery | July 1957

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HISTORY

A title at the film's conclusion reads: "We wish to express our deep appreciation to the Municipal services and the people of Copenhagen for their invaluable assistance and cooperation throughout the filming of this production." A 7 Feb 1956 LAT article reported that Hidden Fear would be the first production mutually financed by Hollywood and Danish interests and would be released worldwide by United Artists. The article also stated that director Andre DeToth would confer with Ben Hecht on the screenplay, which was to be based on an original story by Robin Howard. Other contemporary sources do not mention Howard or Hecht, however, and the extent of their contribution to the completed picture, if any, has not been confirmed.
       A HR production chart of 8 Jun 1956 adds Nikolas Karienos to cast and Richard Cahoon as film editor. A 1968 Danish source adds Birgit Brüel, Knud Hallest, Poul Juhl, Tove Maës and Olaf Ussing to the cast, as well as adding Einar Olsen to the photography crew, Werner Hedmann as an assistant director and Tage Nielsen as a producer. Danish actor Erling Schroeder was billed as Paul Erling in the film. Hidden Fear marked actress Anne Neyland's first appearance in a feature film.
       The HR review described the film as "very poor second-place double-bill material" and complained that "the plot has been so completely obscured that it has been lost as far as the average viewer is concerned." The review also criticized the poor lighting and sound recording. DV 's reviewer also had difficulty deciphering the confusing plot and noted that the "sound recording was especially ... More Less

A title at the film's conclusion reads: "We wish to express our deep appreciation to the Municipal services and the people of Copenhagen for their invaluable assistance and cooperation throughout the filming of this production." A 7 Feb 1956 LAT article reported that Hidden Fear would be the first production mutually financed by Hollywood and Danish interests and would be released worldwide by United Artists. The article also stated that director Andre DeToth would confer with Ben Hecht on the screenplay, which was to be based on an original story by Robin Howard. Other contemporary sources do not mention Howard or Hecht, however, and the extent of their contribution to the completed picture, if any, has not been confirmed.
       A HR production chart of 8 Jun 1956 adds Nikolas Karienos to cast and Richard Cahoon as film editor. A 1968 Danish source adds Birgit Brüel, Knud Hallest, Poul Juhl, Tove Maës and Olaf Ussing to the cast, as well as adding Einar Olsen to the photography crew, Werner Hedmann as an assistant director and Tage Nielsen as a producer. Danish actor Erling Schroeder was billed as Paul Erling in the film. Hidden Fear marked actress Anne Neyland's first appearance in a feature film.
       The HR review described the film as "very poor second-place double-bill material" and complained that "the plot has been so completely obscured that it has been lost as far as the average viewer is concerned." The review also criticized the poor lighting and sound recording. DV 's reviewer also had difficulty deciphering the confusing plot and noted that the "sound recording was especially bad, with large patches of dialogue completely unintelligible." More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
27 Jul 1957.
---
Daily Variety
9 Jul 1957
p. 3.
Film Daily
12 Jul 1957
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Apr 1956.
---
Hollywood Reporter
8 Jun 1956
p. 13.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Jul 1956
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Jul 1957
p. 3.
Los Angeles Times
7 Feb 1956.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
13 Jul 1957
p. 451.
Variety
17 Jul 1957
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
WRITERS
Orig story and scr
Orig story and scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Film ed
Asst to ed
COSTUMES
Cost des
MUSIC
Mus comp and cond
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod supv
Studio mgr
DETAILS
Release Date:
July 1957
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 3 July 1957
Production Date:
mid June--28 July 1956 at Palladium Studios, Copenhagen, Denmark
Copyright Claimant:
St. Aubrey-Kohn Productions, Inc.
Copyright Date:
7 June 1957
Copyright Number:
LP8755
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound Recording
Black and White
Widescreen/ratio
1.85:1
Duration(in mins):
83
Countries:
Denmark, United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
18199
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

After his sister Susan is arrested in Copenhagen for murdering her partner in a nightclub act, American police detective Mike Brent flies to Denmark to help her. Although there is very strong evidence against her, Susan insists that she is innocent. When Mike contacts Susan’s friend and fellow nightclub performer, Virginia Kelly, Virginia introduces him to her much older lover, Arthur Miller, who offers to assist Mike in proving Susan’s innocence. At night, Mike visits the crime scene and interrupts a thief, Jacobsen, as he steals counterfeit hundred dollar bills concealed in Indian clubs used in Susan’s act. Mike shows the bills to Danish police lieutenant Egon Knudsen, but the lieutenant is already aware of their existence. Jacobsen reports back to Miller, the second-in-command of a gang of counterfeiters, which intends to flood major U.S. and European cities with the bogus currency. Hartman, the gang’s leader, framed Susan for murdering her partner, an errant gang member. Hartman is concerned about Mike’s involvement in the case, although he is unaware that Mike is a police detective. Suspecting that Susan may have been involved with the counterfeiters, Mike accuses her of lying to him and hits her, but she continues to deny any criminal involvement. After Mike establishes that Virginia is unaware of the counterfeit scheme, they become friends. Knudsen attempts to help Mike by arranging for him to meet an informant, but the man is killed before Mike can talk with him. In his hotel, Mike is approached by Lund, one of Hartman’s representatives, who offers to buy back the seventy-two hundred dollar bills Mike found for a meager amount. Mike insists on a dollar-for-dollar arrangement then throws out ... +


After his sister Susan is arrested in Copenhagen for murdering her partner in a nightclub act, American police detective Mike Brent flies to Denmark to help her. Although there is very strong evidence against her, Susan insists that she is innocent. When Mike contacts Susan’s friend and fellow nightclub performer, Virginia Kelly, Virginia introduces him to her much older lover, Arthur Miller, who offers to assist Mike in proving Susan’s innocence. At night, Mike visits the crime scene and interrupts a thief, Jacobsen, as he steals counterfeit hundred dollar bills concealed in Indian clubs used in Susan’s act. Mike shows the bills to Danish police lieutenant Egon Knudsen, but the lieutenant is already aware of their existence. Jacobsen reports back to Miller, the second-in-command of a gang of counterfeiters, which intends to flood major U.S. and European cities with the bogus currency. Hartman, the gang’s leader, framed Susan for murdering her partner, an errant gang member. Hartman is concerned about Mike’s involvement in the case, although he is unaware that Mike is a police detective. Suspecting that Susan may have been involved with the counterfeiters, Mike accuses her of lying to him and hits her, but she continues to deny any criminal involvement. After Mike establishes that Virginia is unaware of the counterfeit scheme, they become friends. Knudsen attempts to help Mike by arranging for him to meet an informant, but the man is killed before Mike can talk with him. In his hotel, Mike is approached by Lund, one of Hartman’s representatives, who offers to buy back the seventy-two hundred dollar bills Mike found for a meager amount. Mike insists on a dollar-for-dollar arrangement then throws out Lund. After Lund’s body is fished out of the harbor, Mike is informed that he was killed by a gun that Knudsen lent to Mike. Meanwhile, Hartman is determined to proceed with his plan to flood major cities with the counterfeit currency on the same day, three weeks hence and, in order to prevent any interference from Mike, has him captured by gang associate Gibbs and taken first to a boat, then to Miller’s country mansion. Meanwhile, Virginia drives to the mansion where, after telling Miller that she has been interrogated by the police about his activities and that Mike is a police officer, tries to break up with him. When Mike arrives at the mansion, he manages to escape, but Gibbs and Miller chase him through the house. Gibbs finds Virginia and, misunderstanding her presence there, knocks her out. Hartman, intending to double-cross his partners, rigs a car with a bomb with a slow-burning fuse, then orders Gibbs and Miller to drive it to his boat, while he rides there on his motorcycle with the plates for the counterfeit bills. As the police tail the car, it explodes in the middle of a country road. Mike discovers a recovering Virginia in the house and after seeing Hartman leave on his motorcycle, tells her to phone Knudsen. Mike then borrows Miller’s car to pursue Hartman through the streets of a small rural town until he abandons the motorcycle and takes a taxi to the harbor. Meanwhile, Knudsen orders all police units to concentrate on the harbor. Mike, sensing that Hartman is planning to escape from the harbor, reaches the boat first and overpowers the guard. As Hartman steers the boat away from the dock, Mike attacks him and they both fall into the water where they struggle for possession of a knife. After killing Hartman, Mike is picked up by a police helicopter. Later, the destruction of the counterfeit ring results in Susan being cleared of the murder charge, and before returning to the U.S., she and Mike thank Knudsen and Virginia for their help. Virginia, by now romantically involved with Mike, plans to join him shortly. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.