User Reviews (16)

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  • "It has some very good London exteriors showing WWII bombed out building, streets, and vintage cars but that's about it," notes another reviewer here, and that sums up "Escape Route". I watched it mainly for the nostalgia of the outdoor scenes in London, especially close to the Thames. The plot isn't too bad, though I wasn't convinced by Rossi's ploy to publicise his arrival in London - would the police have really plastered photographs everywhere of an American who had slipped through Immigration? And what happened to the taxi driver whom Rossi told to wait when he checked out the first address. There was no sign of him when Rossi left the building and walked off.

    Raft was 51 when this film was released and looked it, despite wearing the toupee that can be discerned in shots of the back of his head. When a it wasn't a stuntman doing some of the more athletic scenes, Raft still looked clumsy and some of the punches were all too obviously "pulled".
  • This is being advertised as part of a film noir collection. Its is definitely not noir. It is a cheap B&W second run British post-war espionage mystery. It has some very good London exteriors showing WWII bombed out building, streets, and vintage cars but that's about it. George Raft is his usual upright, erect, suave self and the story is hokey, naturally there is a female romantic interest thrown in as usual formula but it is not objectionable or at all a waste of time, it's a good display of a has-been American actor on the cheap to a a thrifty British production and that's all. It is watchable, you don't want to turn it off, so see it for what it is without any high expectations.
  • Airplane engineers are being snatched off the street, so George Raft, an airplane designer, flies to London to take up Clifford Evans' job offer, only first he has to find him. This leads him to Sally Gray, who turns out to be working for British Intelligence. They start pursuing Evans together.

    This is a rote movie and everyone seems to be putting in just enough energy to collect their paychecks. The script starts and stops for no clear reason, as bad guys try to kill Raft and then leave after the first attempt fails; a bad guy takes a swing at Raft, misses by several inches, and Raft falls down. The entire production is run in such a sloppy, uncaring manner that the viewer must be similarly unengaged.

    There is some decent inadvertent documentary work in the site location; as Raft and Miss Gray wander about London, there are some nice views of still unrepaired war damage. However, given the generally low level of excellence, that made me think the film makers were ripping off shots from THE THIRD MAN and NAKED CITY.

    This was Sally Gray's first movie since 1949 and her last. She would retire from the movies to become Baroness Oranmore and Browne, Baroness Mereworth in a fifty-year marriage and live to be 91. It's a happy ending that satisfies me.
  • Another quota quickie British film of the fifties. This is one of literally hundreds of films that had an American actor in the leading role purely as a way of getting a release in the USA.

    George Raft stars as an FBI agent sent over to Britain to find out how, why and where leading scientists are being abducted and taken East.

    Raft, obviously at the twilight of his career, looks a little bored with the whole thing. Judging by his square shoulders, he seems to have left his coat hanger in his overcoat and his arms seem to be glued to his sides. His leading lady, quite a bit younger than him, also seems uneasy of smooching an older man!

    Using schoolboy spy techniques they uncover the spy ring and Raft gets the girl. An undemanding film that passes the short running time.
  • This is no noir, and at least on my disc, the sound was not good.

    Many actors post-war went to England and did a lot of these B movies, which are done with next to no budget. Among the actors who participated: Dennis O'Keefe, Robert Preston, Dane Clark, and Cesar Romero. I have to say they're fun and sometimes atmospheric.

    This one, with George Raft, has some good atmosphere - bombed-out London and some nice interiors.

    In the story, nuclear scientists are kidnapped and taken behind the Iron Curtain. An undercover FBI agent (Raft) and a British agent (Frederick Piper) are assigned to capture the kidnappers. Raft sneaks into the country, escaping immigration, in order to draw attention to himself so he would be seen as wanted and nonthreatening.

    What winds up happening is that the British agent's assistant, played by Sally Gray, ends up with Raft as they track the kidnappers.

    This is pretty ordinary stuff. I like both Gray and Raft. Raft had a real warmth about him when he was at Warners, but I think he's one actor who needed a good director. Here he's elegant but monotoned.

    Just okay. Unfortunately, this was Sally Gray's last film. She was invited to go to Hollywood but instead married a Lord who was in the House of Lords, stayed married to him for 52 years, and never worked again. He was 100 when he died; she was 91.

    The story goes that her stepson was a friend of John Lennon's and is the subject of "A Day in the Life of a Fool."
  • Warning: Spoilers
    With I'll Get You, a low-budget British spy thriller made in 1952, George Raft has tired eyes, a middle-aged face, and he looks so stolid you'd think he'd need a double just to walk briskly down the street. As always, his flat, tough line delivery makes "I love you" come across with the same lack of emotion as "Drop that gat." So what made him a big-time star? I think at least on one level it was because he seemed without pretension...he seemed exactly what he appeared to be, not an "actor" but a guy making good at a job. It didn't hurt that he was lucky enough to land some first-rate movies in the late Thirties and early Forties. The image and reputation from those years stayed with him through the decline that set in during the middle Forties and just kept accelerating. He was stuck making some awful pictures when producers thought he could still sell enough tickets to help a quickie, low-budget movie turn a profit.

    I like George Raft. For some reason I enjoy him especially in many of these B movies from the late Forties and early Fifties. You have to turn off your film appreciation switch and just sit back with your remote control at hand. Some of my favorites that leave critics aghast include Background to Danger, Johnny Angel, Mr Ace, Nocturne, Christmas Eve and even Outpost in Morocco. Raft, wearing Arab pantaloons, had courage to star in that one. Unfortunately, that leaves a number of his starring movies without many redeeming characteristics. I'll Get You is one of those. It's a dull spy movie without pacing or tension. Key scientists are being kidnapped and taken behind the Iron Curtain. One was an American. Another was grabbed in London. British Intelligence is on the case. Steve Rossi (Raft) shows up from America as a top aircraft engineer, but he disappears within minutes of his aircraft landing. He starts asking about someone named Michael Grand while British immigration is trying to find out where Rossi went. Along the way Rossi winds up looking down the wrong end of a revolver held by Joan Miller (Sally Gray), who turns out to be...wait, it also turns out that Steve is...wait...I hate spoilers. Better see the movie. It will take 78 minutes, but will seem longer.

    At least you'll be able to meet Sally Gray, if you haven't already. This was her last movie. She was a good-looking woman and a competent actor who had the good fortune in the Forties to co-star in two fine British movies, Green for Danger - Criterion Collection and They Made Me a Fugitive. Both are worth having. She died in 2006, the widow of Baron Mereworth, who also was the fourth Lord Oranmore and Browne. Sounds a lot better than the long-term contract RKO offered her in 1949 if she'd only move to Hollywood.
  • Prismark101 August 2019
    Escape Route is a low budget quickie with ageing US star George Raft as Steve Rossi.

    Rossi shows up in London, skipping the immigration queue and looking for an old friend called Grand.

    Grand is elusive and wants to stay that way. Rossi is in fact a FBI agent who is investigating a gang kidnapping western scientists and taking them to Eastern Europe. Rossi teams up with the British secret service agent Joan Miller (Sally Gray) to apprehend Grand.

    Raft looks a bit stiff and the romance with his younger star Sally Gray looks a bit ikky.

    The film is ponderous, the title of the movie makes no sense. It is efficient but the plot seems all over the place with no tension or thrills.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This is a British-made movie that despite being part of the "Forgotten Noir" DVD series, isn't really an example of Film Noir. The dialog, camera work and plot just don't seem reminiscent of Noir but is instead a rather unexciting spy yarn.

    The biggest problem with this film is the casting of 57 year-old George Raft in the lead as an FBI agent who later chases and beats up the bad guys. Given his age and stiff gait, I had a hard time believing he could beat up a girl scout--let alone spies!! Raft was never that dynamic an actor, but here he is practically wooden and is totally wrong for the film. To make it worse, they give him a young love interest who just seems too young and their romance moves much too quickly to be believed.

    The plot is very, very ordinary. Not bad, but certainly offering few twists or incentives to care about it one way or the other. Additionally, the film has a poor musical score as again and again and again you hear the same strains of a modified "Volga Boatman's Song"--and it sounds cheap and annoying. Frankly, after seeing it, I really think they should have left this film alone and let it stay forgotten!
  • In one of his Lippert Pictures George Raft shot this one in London where he plays an FBI agent on the trail of some scientists who've been kidnapped in various western countries and presumably taken to the Soviet Union to work for the other side. To accomplish his mission Raft has to team up with Sally Gray of British Intelligence who is both pretty and useful.

    By that I mean anyone who could reverse a custody situation and get George Raft in a hammerlock has to be a girl you can get serious about when the mission is completed.

    Even though the film isn't quite 80 minutes it moves along at a ponderous pace. Raft looked bored throughout the film, his paycheck must have cleared and he was going through the motions. His days as a top star were over and he was reduced to Poverty Row Lippert Pictures to get enough money to pay that huge tax bill Uncle Sam was smacking him with.

    Clifford Evans as the mastermind of the kidnappings had some interesting moments. But the film is definitely mediocre.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    A missing scientist in London, kidnapped on the street, is the mystery here, although another one is the reason the abductors wanted him in the first place, who they are and what the scientist had they wanted. All the audience can do is assume as details are vague and only a few are revealed. American FBI agent George Raft wants to find the scientists, supposedly involved in nuclear experimentation, and does so with pretty British agent Sally Gray who at first holds him at gunpoint. In traditional movie fashion, the 20/30-something young lady falls for the 50-something old man.

    Raft and Gray end up roaming all over London looking for clues, questioning people who seem to have no real connection to the case (at least one that is explained in any kind of detail) which leads to murder and a conclusion in view of the London Bridge. Tiresome in its lack of exposition as to what this is really all about makes for a head-shaking film that seems senseless on every level to pretty much everybody but the screenwriter.
  • As some other reviewers on here have noted, ESCAPE ROUTE is something of a lacklustre effort considering the talent which has gone into the production. It's one of those British B-films which features a washed-up American star who some might say is slumming it in his part. This time around it's George Raft who gives a particularly bored and wooden performance as an American investigator who arrives on British shores searching for the men who have kidnapped some nuclear scientists.

    Yep, it's another thriller that utilises Cold War tensions as a backdrop for its story, but ESCAPE ROUTE is a staged and rather dull entry in the genre. There are no plot ingredients in this one to be remembered more than a couple of hours after watching. There's a lot of interviewing, a lot of chasing around, a lot of people being driven places in cars, and a lot of padding with pursuing police and the like. The plot is faintly ridiculous as it sees Raft skipping customs and thus being the subject of a massive manhunt just for being an illegal alien, hardly high stakes.

    Raft's love interest is about half his age and the actress playing her couldn't be more obviously disinterested. The only actor of note is Clifford Evans playing a stock role with which he was more than familiar. The direction was by American B-movie exponent Seymour Friedman with help from Peter Graham Scott, a man best known for later directing and producing kid's TV shows in the 1970s.
  • George Raft made a lot of poor decisions about his career.As a result his career was going down the drain,and Bogart who was the beneficiary was an international star.He is about 15years to old for the role.In the climax he is totally incapable of making a fight look realistic.He clearly ducks away from a Haymarket.On the descending lift he is clearly only present in close up with the process screen behind him.He was like many actors of his era who became totally lost without the benefit of a studio contract.George Raft would of course become person's non Grata in the UK because of his mob connections.I recall working in a legal office who appealed,unsuccessfully,to the Home Office about this.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Seymour Friedman directs this George Raft vehicle. Raft stars as Steve Rossi, G-man on the trail of kidnappers smuggling notable atomic scientists right off the streets of major world cities. The secrecy-shrouded American travels to London in search of a murdering mystery man behind it all. For reasons not so clear, Rossi must duck Scotland Yard, to track down his prey. The Iron Curtain is real. And the Cold War isn't exactly very cold.

    This low-budget thriller sustains interest and has a cast that also includes: Sally Gray, Patricia Laffan, Clifford Evans, Frederick Piper and Reginald Tate.
  • SnoopyStyle20 September 2020
    The Soviets have been kidnapping scientists from all over the world. FBI agent Steve Rossi (George Raft) sneaks into England to try to infiltrate the kidnapping ring. He is captured by MI5 agent Joan Miller and she joins his mission.

    This is a British espionage thriller. There isn't much thrilling. There is not much action to speak of other than a slow ride down an elevator. The elevator is more interesting than the fight. There is no great spy craft. It's a lot of static talking with intermittent moments of something possibly interesting. It's not enough.
  • I've seen Raft in many movies, and just don't get why people liked him so much. His acting is wooden, not just here, but in many roles. He's not particularly handsome nor charismatic. But whatever.

    I like this movie because it's what we yanks consider a hollywood genre, but set and shot in the UK. It's refreshing to see a procedural done in another country. Similar, but different. And plenty of on location and street shots, not just endless soundstages. The camerawork even has a few imaginative moments.

    But it's not special in any other way. I'm pretty good with british acting names and faces, and I don't recognize one here. It's rare that I recognize only one performer in a movie, in this case, Raft. I didn't previously know Sally Gray. I found it hard not to watch her. To me she looks much more american than british for that time period.

    This could be a good movie for an update, a remake. It's got good bones.
  • Have been watching quite a few of the films presented by TCM in the latest retrospective of George Raft's films. and am amused by many of the reviews critical of the quality of the films. Yes, they are dated, corny, not well-plotted in some cases and Raft is not a very good actor -- in fact he is quite stiff and only seems to move with any grace when he is dancing. But he is fun to watch and in this film, as in many others in this latest series on TCM, you see what audiences found appealing about Raft -- he is always very cool and virtually expressionless regardless of the circumstances and his backstory including his friendship with mobsters is right out of The Godfather.