The Manchurian Candidate

Director: John Frankenheimer

Cast: Frank Sinatra, Laurence Harvey, Janet Leigh, Angela Lansbury, Henry Silva, James Gregory, Leslie Parrish, John McGiver, Khigh Dhiegh, James Edwards, Douglas Henderson, Albert Paulsen, Barry Kelley, Lloyd Corrigan, Madame Spivy

During the Korean War, an American Army patrol is ambushed and taken prisoner by Communist soldiers. A year later the surviving members of the unit return to the United States, where Sergeant Raymond Shaw (Harvey) receives the Medal of Honor for his heroism in saving the lives of his comrades. Raymondís mother, Mrs. Iselin (Lansbury), turns his return into a political rally for Senator John Iselin (Gregory). Raymond despises Iselin, his stepfather, and tries his best to disentangle himself from his manipulative mother. When Chunjin (Silva), a Korean member of Raymondís ill-fated patrol, shows up at Raymondís apartment and offers to work as his valet, Raymond ends up hiring him. Major Bennett Marco (Sinatra), who was the commanding officer of Raymondís unit, is haunted by nightmares in which he dimly recalls what at times appears to be a social meeting of cheery American matrons, and at others a chilling demonstration witnessed by a group of foreign civilian and military officials, in which his brainwashed men are under the control of a confident Chinese Communist scientist that commands one of the men to strangle his friend, while the rest watch unconcerned. Major Marco seeks help from the Army and a psychologist recommends he take some time off. On a train journey for his rest cure, Marco is so shaky that he cannot light a cigarette and knocks over a table with his drink on it. Eugenie Chaney (Leigh) lights a cigarette for him and engages him in conversation, telling him she goes by Rosie and staying with him until he regains his composure. Before they leave the train she gives him her telephone number. Marco looks up Raymond Shaw and meets Chunjin in Raymondís apartment. Marco thinks Chunjin betrayed him in Korea and the two men fight. When the Police arrest Marco, he gives them Rosieís phone number and she bails him out, chiding him for beating up a Chinese gentleman, but telling him she has just broken up with her fiancťe. From Raymond, Marco learns that another man from their unit has the same dreams heís had. When Marco tells this to his Army superiors, they quickly confirm it and identify the men in the dreams as high-ranking Chinese and Russian officials. They place Marco in charge of an investigation to find out whatís going on. Marco uncovers a conspiracy revolving around Raymond Shaw and involving American and foreign Communist agents. Marco must find a way to stop Raymondís controller from compelling him to do something terrible. Based on the Richard Condon novel of the same name.


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