Reign of Terror


Period and swashbuckler films

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Time Out says

Co-scripted by Philip Yordan - who wrote Johnny Guitar as well as Mann's two great epics, El Cid and The Fall of the Roman Empire - this is a French Revolutionary drama made on the lines of Mann's films noirs like T-Men, with atmospheric camerawork by John Alton and ambitious art direction (the producer was William Cameron Menzies, who made Things To Come and designed Gone With the Wind). History is thrown to the wolves as Robert Cummings impersonates a public prosecutor and tries to overthrow the dictatorship of Robespierre (Basehart), whose incriminating 'Black Book' (furnishing the British release title) has been stolen. Historians will scoff and the casting is hardly French, but on its own terms the movie works very well.


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Release details

UK release:



89 mins

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