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Sirocco (1951)

Passed | | Action, Drama, Film-Noir | 13 June 1951 (USA)
A cynical American expatriate gets involved in smuggling and gun-running for the rebels during the 1925 Syrian insurgency against French occupation.

Director:

Curtis Bernhardt

Writers:

A.I. Bezzerides (screenplay), Hans Jacoby (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Humphrey Bogart ... Harry Smith
Märta Torén ... Violette (as Marta Toren)
Lee J. Cobb ... Col. Feroud
Everett Sloane ... Gen. LaSalle
Gerald Mohr ... Major Jean Leon
Zero Mostel ... Balukjiaan
Nick Dennis ... Nasir Aboud
Onslow Stevens ... Emir Hassan
Ludwig Donath ... Flophouse Proprietor
David Bond ... Achmet
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Storyline

In 1925 Damascus Harry Smith runs guns to the rebels under Emir Hassan. The French arrest him along with others and force him to sell weapons to them. He develops an interest in French intelligence officer Feroud's mistress Violette. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

BEYOND CASABLANCA . . . Fate, in a Low-cut Gown, Lies in Wait for Bogart! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Arabic

Release Date:

13 June 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Sirocco - Zwischen Kairo und Damaskus See more »

Filming Locations:

Yuma, Arizona, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to actor Jamie Farr, the movie debuted on Saturday night at the Rivoli in his home town of Toledo. Most of Toledo's Arab-American community turned out to see it. As a scene where Bogart walks though a crowded bazaar begins to fade, an Arab voice is heard shouting, "Ya hallah deen bayak!" which caused most of the audience to collapse in laughter. The non-Arabs in the house did not understand why everyone else was laughing until the line was translated for them: "Goddamn your father!" See more »

Goofs

In a very key plot point scene Balukjiaan goes to Smith's warehouse on behalf of French intelligence and tries to find out if there are any dried apricots. He uses as an excuse that he is throwing a birthday party for himself and has plenty of pilaf and pahklava, but nothing sweet for dessert. Pahklava is the Armenian name for baklava, which is a very sweet Greek and Middle Eastern dessert. Either the writers didn't know what pahklava is or the whole premise of needing dessert is mistaken. See more »

Quotes

Gen. LaSalle: My soldiers didn't survive Verdun to have their throats cut in this stinking hole!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Masters of Sex: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

 
To thine own self be true?
26 March 2005 | by Ham_and_EggerSee all my reviews

In a way Bogart's greatest performances have left Sirocco "priced out of the market." I won't argue that it's on the same level as Casablanca, The Maltese Falcon, or Key Largo, but it is a surprisingly nuanced picture that gets unfairly criticized for not living up to some of the greatest films Hollywood ever produced.

Bogie is Bogie, tough-talking and trenchcoat-wearing as usual. He plays Harry Smith, a man who, ordinarily, doesn't take sides, but this time, see... there's a dame! That sounds a little dismissive, it's not meant to be. Nobody's ever played a "shades of gray" character quite like Bogart, in my opinion he could have done it a dozen *more* times.

Swedish actress Märta Torén (pegged as 'The Next Ingrid Bergman') is the dame. She really seems almost as out-of-place in the picture as she would have been in war-torn Damascus. Lee J. Cobb, playing the French commander Col. Feroud, chews the scenery a little but overall he gives a good portrayal of a man fighting for a cause he no longer believes in.

I'm a fan of both Zero Mostel (the original Max Bialystock) and Nick Dennis (the exuberant Greek mechanic from 'Kiss Me Deadly') and they both have good if small roles here.

I was impressed by the way Sirocco refused to overtly side with either the French or the Syrians. Neither does the film present Smith as anything but what he is, an opportunist. In fact, for me, it his teetering on the brink of whether to take sides or stay neutral (and thus be true to his own self-serving moral code) that provides the film's best drama.


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