No telling how long or short it will be there.
This is a very hard-boiled spy story and a political noir in color. Dirk Bogarde is a real bastard manipulating people to achieve the Brit intelligence aim of keeping a revolutionary leader (Bekim Fehmiu) from going back to his home country just yet. Ava Gardner has a good part and works some wonders with it, except that she falls into whispering too much to suit my ears. Timothy Dalton almost steals the movie as a homosexual foreign office type who is one of five people that Bogarde is using as pawns. Frederic Forest tries hard, too hard, but doesn't get a grip on his character. A French actress and author (Nicole Calfan) plays an assassin-in-waiting, under Bogarde's control. She has two nude scenes. Bogarde himself is not at peak form in this role. The role is quite difficult. As written, it calls for a degree of sympathy for an intelligence agent doing such dirty work; yet the callousness of the character and the violence he exercises is very unsympathetic. Bogarde had the capacity through his eyes alone to make it go either way, and he does so in different scenes, but the end result is not fully satisfying.
Cinematographer Freddie Young keeps many interior settings dark, fitting the story and mood. The score is by Richard Rodney Bennett; jazz fluegelhorn is by the great Art Farmer. The Austrian location in Gmunden, a beautiful tourist town, features both mountains and the lovely Lake Traunsee.
This has been renamed "The Executioner", a worse title. The IMDb rating of 5.9 suggests an average movie. I rate it 6.5. As a noir fan, I appreciated this downbeat story very much.