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Our Man in Havana Reviews

As hilarious as it is absurd, this droll comedy about spies in Cuba stars the prodigiously talented Guinness. The real world of espionage is ridiculous enough, but director Reed manages to make it seem even sillier by putting an innocuous vacuum cleaner salesman (Guinness) in the the middle of all the clandestine goings-on. Guinness, the owner of a small store in Havana, is approached by Coward, a master spy who enlists him as an agent. Realizing he will be making good money for every tidbit of information he passes along to headquarters in London, and wanting that money to be able to buy the good things in life for his daughter (Morrow), but knowing there is no real information to gather, Guinness begins to invent information. Kovacs, the reportedly brutal chief of police, who has cast a covetous eye on Morrow, gets reports that Guinness has been acting in a furtive manner. Kovacs spies on Guinness, while Guinness spies on Kovacs, and the whole affair begins to expand crazily. However, the intrigue ceases to be phony when Guinness is forced to dispatch a very real enemy. Nevertheless, Guinness eventually has to admit to the fabricated nature of the information he has been providing to British intelligence, and he is ordered back to London, where he meets an unexpected fate. Mixing subtle comedy with sinister consequences, OUR MAN IN HAVANA is probably Guinness' drollest film. Guinness is superb as the greedy but imaginative shop owner, but Kovacs, as the posturing police chief, and Coward, as the British master spy, steal the film, which was shot in Havana shortly after the Cuban Revolution.