Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, January 5, 2017


Lex Barker
CODE 7 VICTIM 5! ((1964). Director: Robert Lynn.

Private detective Steve Martin (Lex Barker) comes to Capetown at the request of Wexler (Walter Rilla of The Terror of Dr. Mabuse), who owns many copper mines in South Africa. Wexler's butler has been murdered, but Martin has to find out for himself that there have also been other victims. Wexler, who has his own secrets to hide, is sure he is next on the list. While investigating, and exploring the South African scenery, Martin dallies with Wexler's secretary, Helga (Ann Smyrner), and his step-daughter, Gina (Veronique Vendell). He allies himself with Inspector Lean (Ronald Fraser of The Flight of the Phoenix), and meets Wexler's doctor, Paul (Dietmar Schonherr of The Monster of London City), and mine manager, Anderson (Percy Sieff). Barker is okay as the private dick, and the story is not without interest, but this leisurely-paced movie serves chiefly to showcase some interesting Capetown settings, such as during a gun battle inside huge, impressive caverns. A cliff side finale is not as taut as it ought to be, and the wrong person is in danger. However, any movie that features an ostrich stampede (!) can't be all bad. Nicholas Roeg was the cinematographer for this travelogue with spurts of action.

Verdict: Movie 5, Audience 0. **.

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