13 Rue Madeleine uit 1948

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13 Rue Madeleine is a 1947 World War II spy film starring James Cagney, Annabella and Richard Conte. The title refers to the Le Havre address where a Gestapo headquarters is located.

Story

Bob Sharkey (James Cagney) is an instructor of would-be spies for the Allied Office of Strategic Services (OSS, the predecessor of the Central Intelligence Agency). He is warned that one of the latest batch of students is a traitor. Sharkey is able to identify the traitor as Bill O’Connell (Richard Conte), who is too good at espionage in Sharkey’s opinion. His boss, Charles Gibson (Walter Abel) confirms that O’Connell is really a top German agent named Wilhelm Kuncel, but tells Sharkey to pass him, as they intend to feed the mole false information about the impending D-Day invasion.

When they complete their training, three of Sharkey’s pupils, Frenchwoman Suzanne de Beaumont (Annabella), American Jeff Lassiter (Frank Latimore) and Kuncel, are sent on two separate missions into German-occupied France. Sharkey tells Lassiter about Kuncel beforehand so he can keep watch on the traitor. However, when Kuncel casually talks to Lassiter, the inexperienced man lets his uneasiness show, alerting Kuncel. On the transport plane, Kuncel secretly cuts Lassiter’s parachute cord, causing him to plummet to his death when they jump.

With no time to brief anybody else to be Lassiter’s replacement, Sharkey volunteers. Gibson objects, since Sharkey knows the location of the planned invasion of Europe, but reluctantly gives in. He and de Beaumont complete their mission (getting a collaborator named Duclois back to England), but Sharkey is captured. De Beaumont is killed transmitting the news to England. Sharkey is tortured by Kuncel’s men, but refuses to talk. Back in England, Gibson has no choice but to order a bombing raid to silence Sharkey. When the bombing starts, Sharkey realizes what is happening and laughs in Kuncel’s face just before they both perish.

Bron: TCM 13 Rue Madeleine uit 1948