Drama, History, Made for TV Movie

The House on Garibaldi Street (1979)

0 Comments 28 June 2012

Studio: MGM

Television Premiere: May 28, 1979

DVD-R Release: May 2012

Director: Peter Collinson

Not Rated

Review by James Klein

Based on a true story which was turned into a book first by Isser Harel and soon into a movie starring Martin Balsam as Harel, this deeply serious drama is for fans of Jewish history and made for TV buffs only.

The House on Garibaldi Street is about the story of the capture of Adolph Eichmann, an evil Nazi war criminal who oversaw the death of many Jews at a concentration camp during WWII. Living inArgentina for two decades under a new name, Eichmann has remained hidden, living his own life until 1960 when he was finally found by the Israeli’s.

Topol and Nick Mancuso play Israeli spies Michael and Ari who have been hired by Harel to capture the Nazi and smuggle him out of the country to be brought back to trial inIsrael. While the men do capture the Nazi and keep him locked up and hidden while they try their best to get out of the country, both men start to have different feelings about Eichmann who is now just an old man. Should he be killed before going to trial? Is it worth risking their own lives to bring this man in? These conflicts are what pushes the film forward, barely holding the viewer’s interest during this overlong TV movie.

While the film’s storyline and actual events are interesting and based on fact, the movie just isn’t that interesting and seems rather plain. Not a whole lot happens in the film. Sure, the film is based on factual events but without much suspense and action, the movie just drags. The bland direction by Peter Collinson doesn’t help either and the movie’s made for TV budget certainly hurts. As much as the actors do a great job with their roles, The House on Garibaldi Street can barely hold the viewer’s interests as to what will happen next. I think that if one already knew the story of Isser Harel and his hired spies, the movie would be pointless to watch.

MGM’s DVD-R looks pretty good and one can hardly find any complaints within the picture and sound. Being as it was a made for TV film, there isn’t much that can be done with the sound. Also, there are no extra features on the disc. No TV spot, making of, nothing. Overall, this DVD is all around really bland.

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