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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon December 21, 2014
I was expecting something in the vein of a post-Casablanca film, with Bogart in the desert fighting against the Nazis. Instead, the movie is set in Syria in 1925 and Bogart's character is supplying arms to the Syrians who are fighting the French in order to enforce the Mandate given to them by the League of Nations. The French are facing an urban insurrection and are proposing to execute hostages. Lee J. Cobb as the French officer in charge of intelligence wants to meet with the Emir leading the insurrection to propose a cease fire. Cobb has a mistress who ignites Bogarts interest. Complications ensue. Lee J. Cobb braves death and Bogart's character - like Rick Blaine - has to decide whether he is going to be a man or the weasel everyone thinks he is.

I found the historical elements fascinating, as if they were from a different world, which they were, namely, the pre-World War II world, where France was a victorious military power and viewed the execution of colonials as the price of doing business. The movie was made in 1951, and is based on a pre-World War II book, so the memories of that world were still fresh (and still existed in French Indochina and Madagascar and Algeria.)

Seeing a young Lee J. Cobb is fun also, and he doesn't disappoint in his role as a noble French officer. Bogart is good also, but this character is not Rick Blaine, albeit he has Rick's cunning and knowledge of the world. The female lead - Marta Toren - didn't make the sale for me. She seemed vapid, disloyal,annoying and mercenary, which she probably was, but it wasn't a major prop to move the story forward.

This is not Casablanca caliber. Except for the history part, and viewing this as a kind of Bogart completist, I give this a four. It was decent and had enough hooks to keep my interest.
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on June 28, 2016
Another very good Bogart film. This is a very interesting film to watch given the geo-political perspective between now and then. I don't think the acting is Oscar level stuff, but it is competent. Bogart, a gun runner in the turmoil of 1925 Syria, is caught between a rock and a hard place and is trying to get out of Damascus before he killed or arrested. Lee J. Cobb plays a French military intelligence officer has a mistress that also wants to get out of Damascus and away from her paramour. Of course, Bogart and the femme fatale find each other and the complications for both mount quickly. I highly recommend this film particularly because of the resemblance between the Mid-East almost 100 years ago and the current situation in Syria.
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on June 22, 2011
The important "background story" to "Sirocco" is the screenwriter, A.I. " Buzz" Bezzerides, (August 9, 1908-January 1, 2007), an American novelist and screenwriter, best known for writing Film Noir and Action motion pictures, especially several of Warners' "social conscience" films of the 1940s. He wrote such action feature movies as "They Drive by Night" (1940) - which was based on his novel, The Long Haul (1938), "Desert Fury" (1947), "Thieves' Highway" (1949), "On Dangerous Ground" (1952), "Track of the Cat" (1954), and "Kiss Me Deadly" (1955).

"Sirocco" is also a "social conscience" film. Many of the key actors in the film were highly involved in the "social conscience" issues of the day in the late 1940's and early 1950's. The key aspect within this film's screenplay is when characters name names, "rat" on one another, and everything changes after that. In short, the storyline was an allegory for the period the film was made.

All of A.I. Bezzerides film noir movies (noted above) have a very cynical outlook on life. If you thought Bogart's character was a cynic in "Casablanca" wait until you see Bogart in "Sirocco" -- he is a totally cynical character who seems to believe in nothing at all.

Another important element in this film is the locale and time frame of the screenplay. The story takes place in Syria in the 1920's during the French occupation. There are terrorist bomb attacks, hostage takings, fighting in the streets, insurgents, etc. The environment is much like today in the Middle East, nothing has changed but the names of the characters.

"Sirocco" is a "social conscience" Film Noir that depicts a very depressing world. It is a sad story to watch.
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on September 4, 2017
this is a interesting movie /humphery bogart
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on March 16, 2017
It was a good Bogie mvie
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on June 8, 2016
This movie was made over 60 years ago and I would say that the political and social climate of the that area described in the movie hasn't changed much.
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on August 23, 2013
Humphrey Bogart gives a nuanced performance starting as an egotistical arms dealer and evolving as a character with a dawning of moral and ethical awareness. It's relevant for today in that the setting is Syria and the people are rebelling against the governing French back in the early 20th century.
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on May 10, 2013
The look, his speech, the way he moved. None since had the moxie of Bogart. I wish he would've starred in ten more Marlow
adventures.

Bill
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on May 22, 2017
SYRIA SAME OLE SAME OLE THIS TIME WITH Bogey
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on October 1, 2015
Really Great film by Bogart you never hear much about! Trust me its truly up there with his best.!
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