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12 Underrated Michael Caine Films

A screen legend, Michael Caine has made over 100 films spanning more than 60 years. In amongst those are plenty of solid gold classics, including Zulu (1964), The Ipcress File (1965), Get Carter (1971) and The Man Who Would be King (1975). Admittedly, there are quite a few not very good ones too, including stinkers like The Swarm (1978), Jaws - The Revenge (1987) and Bullseye! (1990).

But in between those two extremes there are plenty of Michael Caine films that get unfairly overlooked. As Gill from Real Weegie Midget Reviews has brought back the Michael Caine Blogathon, I've decided to take a look at some of those films. For this article, I have chosen twelve Michael Caine films that I think are underrated, unfairly maligned or just need some more love.

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Evil Under the Sun (1982)

Renowned Belgian detective Hercule Poirot (Peter Ustinov) is called in by a London insurance company when wealthy industrialist Sir Horace Blatt (Colin Blakely) attempts to have a cheap piece of costume jewellery insured for £50,000. Puzzled by this very wealthy man attempting to perpetrate such an obvious fraud, Poirot is sent to meet him on his yacht in the south of France.

When the two men meet, Sir Horace tells Poirot that the jewel was a gift to a mistress, former actress Arlena Marshall (Diana Rigg), who has obviously had the original jewellery replaced with a fake. Poirot heads to an exclusive hotel on a small island in the Adriatic to meet Arlena and to investigate.

While there he encounters an assortment of wealthy guests, including Arlena and her husband Kenneth (Denis Quilley), her lover Patrick Redfern (Nicholas Clay) and her former associate Daphne Castle (Maggie Smith), who now runs the hotel. Also present are waspish gossip columnist Rex Brewster (Roddy McDowall), Redf…

Movie Quiz: Films of the 1980s

Ah, the 1980s. It's long enough ago now that we can all get nostalgic about the decade, and while the '80s produced a lot of dross, there were some great films in there too. Here are 25 famous films from the 1980s. How many can you name?

The Desert Fox: The Story of Rommel (1951)

Of all the heroic figures to have been created by World War II, and to be immortalised by a Hollywood biopic, Erwin Rommel has to be one of the most unlikely.

Rommel was a German General who fought the Allies in Europe and North Africa and loyally served Hitler, at least until it became clear that Germany was losing the war. But his reputation in the North African campaign, where he was untainted by allegations of serious war crimes, and his alleged involvement in the July Plot to assassinate Hitler in 1944, helped to turn him into an acceptable figure of non-Nazi German soldiery in the years after World War II.

Like the American General George Patton and Britain's Bernard Montgomery, Rommel's antagonist in the desert, Rommel was also an adept self-promoter, something that helped to make him the best known German General of the war. His skill as a military commander was demonstrated in North Africa, where he fought against the British. He earned the enduring respect of his op…

Death on the Nile (1978)

Following the success of the all-star murder mystery Murder on the Orient Express (1974), that film's producers, John Brabourne and Richard Goodwin, followed up with another lavish Agatha Christie adaptation, 1978's Death on the Nile.

As with Murder on the Orient Express, Death on the Nile assembles a group of mostly wealthy travellers taking part in an exotic journey, in this case a steam boat trip along the River Nile in Egypt in the 1930s. Among the passengers on board are a honeymooning couple, wealthy American heiress Linnet Ridgeway (Lois Chiles) and her new English husband Simon Doyle (Simon MacCorkindale), as well as the latter's jealous ex-fiancée Jacqueline (Mia Farrow), who appears to be stalking them wherever they go.

Linnet is later murdered while on board the boat, shot at close range with a pistol. Unfortunately for the murderer, the famous Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot (Peter Ustinov), is also on board. When he investigates, with the aid of an old asso…

The 39 Steps (1959)

Alfred Hitchcock's 1935 classic The 39 Steps is one of his best films of the 1930s. It's also been a highly influential one, influencing not only Hitchcock's later films, but also those of just about anyone else who has made a thriller in this vein since.

British film, theatre and television have found it almost impossible to leave the story alone, so enamoured are they with the Hitchcock film. There have been an additional two film versions, one in 1959 and one in 1978, a TV film in 2008, and a popular tongue-in-cheek stage version in the 2000s. Although The Thirty-Nine Steps was originally a popular novel by John Buchan, most of the subsequent versions have patterned themselves more on Hitchcock's film than on the original book.
The 1959 film stars Kenneth More as Richard Hannay, the lead role played in the Hitchcock film by Robert Donat. Hannay is out for a pleasant stroll in Regent's Park in London one day when he runs into a nanny pushing a pram, supposedly w…

Funeral in Berlin (1966)

In this first sequel to The Ipcress File(1965), British spy Harry Palmer (Michael Caine) is sent to West Berlin, where British intelligence has word that a senior Russian officer, Colonel Stok (Oskar Homolka) wants to defect. Palmer arranges to meet Stok over the border in East Berlin, where the Russian tells him that he wants to be spirited to the West by the same organisation that has arranged a series of daring escapes from East Germany, and to be settled in a new life in Britain.

Palmer is suspicious of Stok's motives and sceptical of his claims that he wants to defect. However, Palmer's boss, Colonel Ross (Guy Doleman), orders him to arrange the defection. The plan sees Palmer reunited with an old friend, Johnny Vulkan (Paul Hubschmid), now working for the British in Berlin, and become involved with a beautiful female spy, Samantha Steel (Eva Renzi).