"A man doesn't tell a woman what to do. She tells herself."
A 1946 film directed by Alfred Hitchcock
stared Cary Grant
, Ingrid Bergman
and Claude Rains
Alicia, daughter of a convicted Nazi spy, is recruited by agent T.R. Devlin for an important assignment. A few Nazis, led by one Alexander Sebastian, have relocated to Brazil for an evil plan. Her mission, should she choose to accept it, is to infiltrate the group and find out their goal. She infiltrates the group, and eventually marries Sebastian, over his mother's objections. How long can Alicia uphold her charade? Can Devlin save the day if her cover's blown?
Not to be confused with the 2009 Biopic
about The Notorious B.I.G.
This film contains examples of:
- Affably Evil: Sebastian is about the nicest, most debonair Nazi you'll ever meet—in fact one gets the sense that he probably cares more about Alicia than Devlin does.
- Argentina Is Naziland
- The Baroness: Madame Sebastian.
- Big Damn Heroes: Devlin saves the day when it seems Alicia might die from the poisoning. How big? Count the steps, there are a lot more when he's going down than when he went up them.
- Creator Cameo: As always with Hitchcock films. In this one, he's quaffing champagne at Sebastian's party.
- Everybody Has Lots of Sex: Despite many people's perceptions of the 1940's, one of the reasons Alicia is selected by the American goverment is because she has a history of many boyfriends and this is neither out of the ordinary nor exceptionally noteworthy. She and Alexander Sebastian sleep together before marriage, before there is even a proposal, and the entire courtship took only a few weeks.
- My Girl Is Not a Slut: Devlin keeps sniping at Alicia about this and eventually suggests that she abandon the whole project, since he doesn't want his girlfriend to be that kind of girl.
- Evil Matriarch: Madame Sebastian, again.
- Hard Drinking Party Girl: Alicia runs to alcohol to help deal with her personal life, and the problems that arise from it.
- Hays Code: The Code said a kiss could not be held onscreen for longer than three seconds. This led Hitchcock to craft the famous kissing scene in this movie where Alicia and Devlin embrace, kiss each other, nuzzle a little, chat softly about making arrangements for dinner, kiss again, nuzzle, kiss again... A wonderful example of Hitchcock Getting Crap Past the Radar.
- Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Alexander doesn't really seem to be that evil at all. There's not even a single instance of Putting on the Reich, and he only comes to the decision to kill Alicia after being bullied by his mother, and after seeing what the other Nazis did to a scientist who let on too much.
- MacGuffin: The uranium in the wine cellar.
- Make It Look Like An Accident: What they did to poor Dr. Hubka.
- The Mole: A heroic version.
- My Beloved Smother: Lady Sebastian, yet again. A particularly evil example.
- Oh Crap: Sebastian, when the other Nazis find out about his marrying an American Agent.
- Perfect Poison: Averted. The Sebastians attempt to kill Alicia by spiking her coffee, but it is done gradually to give the impression that she is simply ill. This keeps their fellow Nazis from growing suspicious and also prevents Alicia from acting until it is already too late.
- Playing Gertrude: Leopoldine Konstantin was a mere three years older than her on-screen son, Claude Rains.
- Pretty in Mink: Alicia wears an ermine wrap and a mink coat.
- Those Wacky Nazis
- Would Hit a Girl: Devlin, although he's partially justified in doing so, as she nearly killed him with her drunk driving, then became hysterical upon realizing he is a government agent.