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Starring: Colin Firth, Matthew Macfadyen, Kelly Macdonald, Penelope Wilton, Johnny Flynn, Jason Isaacs, Tom Wilkinson, Hattie Morahan, Simon Russell Beale, Paul Ritter, Mark Gatiss
Period war drama directed by John Madden. Inspired by a true story, set in 1943 during World War II, in Operation Mincemeat (2022), the Allies are determined to break Hitler’s grip on occupied Europe and plan an invasion of Sicily, but they face an impossible challenge, how to protect a massive invasion force from potential massacre. It falls to two intelligence officers, Ewen Montagu (Colin Firth) and Charles Cholmondeley (Matthew Macfadyen), to come up with the most inspired and improbable disinformation strategy of the war, centered on the most unlikely of secret agents, a dead man.
We’ll add the best quotes once the movie is released and we’ve had a chance to watch it, but for now, here’s a small selection.
Ewen Montagu: In five weeks, a hundred thousand British forces will strike Sicily’s southern shore. Unfortunately, the Nazis know of our intentions. So, we’re going to play a humiliating trick on Hitler.
Ewen Montagu: We have to convince Germany that our target is Greece. The plan begins in Spain, where a corpse will wash up on shore bearing classified letters.
Admiral John Godfrey: A corpse carrying fake documents?
Charles Cholmondeley: Given the fascist network there, we could quite literally float the documents right into enemy hands.
Admiral John Godfrey: Prime Minister, it’s too big a risk. The fate of the world is at stake.
Winston Churchill: The plan is highly implausible. So when can it be ready?
Ewen Montagu: Well, let’s say we start with the easy part, and find ourselves a corpse.
Ewen Montagu: [referring to the corpse] Where are his legs?
Charles Cholmondeley: The thing is, the Germans will scrutinize every detail of our fallen man.
Ewen Montagu: He must be as real as you or I.
Hester Leggett: He would carry a letter from his wife, professing her deep love for him.
Charles Cholmondeley: Very good. And he would carry her photograph.
Jean Leslie: [volunteering her photo] My contribution to the mission for a seat at the table.
Charles Cholmondeley: Although, what if the autopsy reveals he didn’t die of drowning? Or if the briefcase is returned to us without the Germans seeing its contents?
Ian Fleming: Charles, why on earth do you keep poking holes in our plan?
Charles Cholmondeley: I’m preemptively poking.
Charles Cholmondeley: Success depends on guiding the papers into Hitler’s hands.
Hester Leggett: The nightmare marching this way is only too real.
Ewen Montagu: And the Spanish won’t let the Germans anywhere near our briefcase. We are in the dark.
Winston Churchill: If the enemy is waiting for us on those beaches, history herself will avert our eyes from the slaughter.
Charles Cholmondeley: I may vomit.
Ewen Montagu: I may vomit with you.
Ian Fleming: In stories of war, there is that which is seen, and that which is hidden. In the hidden war, the truth is protected by a bodyguard of lies. Its soldiers unseen, its heroes unsung. This is our war.
Ewen Montagu: In God’s name, Fleming, what are you writing?
Ian Fleming: Spy story.