This dramatic tale in Operation Amsterdam – made all the better by the knowledge that it is based on real events – follows two Dutchmen and a British spy as they try to stop Holland’s store of industrial diamonds from falling into the hands of the Nazis in 1940.
Dispatched from Britain shortly after the German invasion of Holland, they get to the Amsterdam diamond market just ahead of the enemy. They then face a tense day trying to persuade diamond traders to hand over their stock whilst also staying out of trouble with fifth columnists and Nazi sympathisers.
Most of the action in Operation Amsterdam is low key tension, aided by a very well judged musical score, and although an obviously dated film being from 1959, there is still plenty to enjoy. Especially when the director repeatedly cuts to shots of clocks to heighten the tension as time slips away for the team to complete their mission in time to get away safely.
The hyperbole from the DVD cover – “They had to outsmart a city in order to save the world” – is thankfully missing from the film itself. Important though it was to bring the industrial diamonds to the UK, this was hardly a world-saving mission.
The DVD itself is pretty basic: no extras, no subtitles and the writing on the back of the box has an impressively large number of errors for such a short piece of text. The whole movie is there and the picture and sound qualities are good. However, it is in 4:3 ratio so you lose some of the pleasure of the original widescreen format.
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