6.1/10
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73 user 36 critic

Billion Dollar Brain (1967)

A former British spy stumbles into in a plot to overthrow Communism with the help of a supercomputer. But who is working for whom?

Director:

Ken Russell

Writers:

Len Deighton (novel), John McGrath (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Caine ... Harry Palmer
Karl Malden ... Leo Newbigen
Ed Begley ... Gen. Midwinter
Oskar Homolka ... Col. Stok (as Oscar Homolka)
Françoise Dorléac ... Anya (as Francoise Dorleac)
Guy Doleman ... Col. Ross
Vladek Sheybal ... Dr. Eiwort
Milo Sperber Milo Sperber ... Basil
Janos Kurutz Janos Kurutz ... Latvian Gangster
Alexei Jawdokimov Alexei Jawdokimov ... Latvian Gangster
Paul Tamarin Paul Tamarin ... Latvian Gangster
Izabella Telezynska Izabella Telezynska ... Latvian Gangster (as Iza Teller)
Mark Elwes Mark Elwes ... Birkenshaw
Stanley Caine Stanley Caine ... G.P.O. Special Delivery Boy
Gregg Palmer Gregg Palmer ... First Dutch Businessman
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Storyline

Harry Palmer has left the British Secret Service and become a private detective. One of his first assignments is to deliver an apparently innocent thermos flask to an old friend in Helsinki, Palmer is suspicious of the flask contents and begins to doubt the motives of his friend and those of his boss a Texan billionaire. Written by Dave Jenkins <david.jenkins@smallworld.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Pow . . . Power . . . Brainpower

Genres:

Crime | Thriller

Certificate:

See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English | Russian | Finnish

Release Date:

14 January 1968 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Con el mundo a sus pies See more »

Filming Locations:

Senaatintori, Helsinki, Finland See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (as De Luxe)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although the film follows the novel quite closely, for unknown reasons, Karl Malden's character name was changed from "Harvey Newbegin" in the book, to "Leo Newbigen" for the film. See more »

Goofs

Train wagon in Russia was marked VR which is Finnish Railways acronym meaning Valtion Rautatiet. See more »

Quotes

Harry Palmer: Dr. Kaarna, I presume?
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening credits, crew names are written in all uppercase letters, with the exception of Production Manager Eva Monley whose name is written "eva monley". See more »

Alternate Versions

31 seconds of the original movie are missing on the MGM DVD release of 2004. The licensing rights of the Beatles song "A Hard Day's Night", which was heard in the scene where Harry meets Basil, were too expensive so they cut the whole scene. See more »

Connections

Featured in Caine Below Zero (1967) See more »

Soundtracks

Thunderbird
(uncredited)
Written by Houston and Ernie Hunter
Blue Star Record Co
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Few Foot Notes
29 February 2008 | by dtoth10See all my reviews

Just wanted to add a few foot notes concerning the vastly under rated plot line of Billion Dollar Brain. The character of Midwinter was actually based on H. L. Hunt, the Texas oil and ketchup king who ran his own international spy network (occasionally doing jobs on the side for the CIA), was insanely anti-Russian, and (according to the death bed claims of E. Howard Hunt) may have bank rolled the murder of JFK.

When the film was first released, many critics felt that the computer system was a sill sci-fi element. In reality, the US was already involved in the creation of the internet system. Since it was suppose to be top secret, it is a little surprisingly that they didn't utter a peep.

Virtually all American critics at the time took swipes at the film for it's intense anti-American statement. It was the Sixties, the Vietnam was still burning hot, and attacks on stupid war waging Texans seemed pretty cheap and easy. Today, after 7 years of George W. and Dick Cheney, the film almost looks like a news program.


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