GenreDrama, Thriller Story byDerek Marlowe CountryUnited Kingdom
Release date1968 Based onA Dandy in Aspic
by Derek Marlowe WriterDerek Marlowe (screenplay), Derek Marlowe (novel) CastLaurence Harvey (Eberlin), Tom Courtenay (Gatiss), Mia Farrow (Caroline), Harry Andrews (Fraser), Peter Cook (Prentiss), Lionel Stander (Sobakevich) Similar moviesSalt, Dr. No, The Good Shepherd, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, The Living Daylights
TaglineA Double Agent in Double Danger!
A dandy in aspic
A Dandy in Aspic is a 1968 Technicolor and Panavision British spy film, directed by Anthony Mann, based on the novel of the same name by Derek Marlowe and starring Laurence Harvey, Tom Courtenay, and Mia Farrow. It was the Mann's final film.
Essentially a Cold War thriller, it is the story of a Russian counter-espionage agent, known as Eberlin (Laurence Harvey) to his employers in British Intelligence, where he is working undercover for Moscow as a double agent.
Eberlin's (Laurence Harvey) superiors in Britain instruct him to find and assassinate a KGB agent named Krasnevin, believed to have killed a number of British agents. This presents a problem for Eberlin, as he is Krasnevin. Summoned to a meeting at a country house, he is presented with a photograph of the suspected Krasnevin. It turns out to be his handler and go-between with Moscow.
He is partnered with a ruthless, cynical and sociopathic British agent Gatiss (Tom Courtenay), who openly distrusts and dislikes him. Mia Farrow plays a London-based photographer with whom Eberlin has an affair. Much of the film takes place in West Berlin, where Eberlin tackles the dilemma posed by his mission by attempting to escape across the Berlin Wall to the East. His attempts are frustrated by his partnership with Gatiss, and by the Soviet authorities, who are keen to retain one of their top agents in British intelligence.
Laurence Harvey as Eberlin
Tom Courtenay as Gatiss
Mia Farrow as Caroline
Harry Andrews as Fraser
Peter Cook as Prentiss
Lionel Stander as Sobakevich
Per Oscarsson as Pavel
Barbara Murray as Miss Vogler
John Bird as Henderson
Norman Bird as Copperfield
Geoffrey Bayldon as Lake
Calvin Lockhart as Brogue
James Cossins as Heston-Stevas
Michael Trubshawe as Flowers
Geoffrey Lumsden as Ridley
Elspeth March as Lady Hetherington
Richard O'Sullivan as Nevil
Mike Pratt as Greff
George Murcell as Sergeant Harris
Vernon Dobtcheff as Stein
Largely filmed on location in London and Berlin, this was Anthony Mann's final film; he died of a heart attack before it was finished. Its direction was completed by Harvey. The film also features Peter Cook, at a time when his TV career was at a peak, in a minor role as the foppish but libidinous British agent, Prentiss.
A Dandy in Aspic was released to DVD on 1 August 2011 by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment as a DVD-on-demand title available through Amazon.