Night Flight from Moscow

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Night Flight from Moscow
Film poster under title Le Serpent
Directed by Henri Verneuil
Produced by Henri Verneuil
Written by Henri Verneuil
Gilles Perrault
Starring Yul Brynner
Henry Fonda
Dirk Bogarde
Music by Ennio Morricone
Cinematography Claude Renoir
Edited by Pierre Gillette
Distributed by Pathfinder Pictures
Release date
7 April 1973
Running time
113 minutes
Country France, Italy, West Germany
Language English

Night Flight from Moscow (also known as Le Serpent[1]) is a Franco-German-Italian thriller released in 1973. It was produced and directed by Henri Verneuil. The score was composed by Ennio Morricone.


Aleksey Teodorovic Vlassov (Yul Brynner) is a high ranking KGB official who defects while in France. He has with him highly-classified information as part of a deal with Western intelligence for his arrival in the United States. The debriefing is held at Langley by DCI Allan Davies (Henry Fonda) and MI6 representative Philip Boyle (Dirk Bogarde). Vlassov hands off a list of enemy agents in Western Europe including a deep penetration into NATO.

Davies wants to begin operations to arrest the agents; however, those on the list suddenly begin to die off. The CIA also has suspicions over the authenticity of Vlassov's claims. The CIA discovers that a defection photo of Vlassov was taken in the Soviet Union, not in Turkey, judging from the contours of Mount Ararat in the background. Vlassov also fails a lie detector test after he angrily protests about sexual related questions asked by the CIA during the test.



A contemporary review by Tony Mastroianni in the Cleveland Press stated this film about espionnage demonstrated how already in 1973 the computer had replaced the dagger. The reviewer also concluded the film had "more good moments than bad".[2]


  1. ^ "The Serpent / Night Flight from Moscow". Retrieved 2013-06-25. 
  2. ^ Mastroianni, Tony (1973-11-23). "Review: CIA spy film: It's not Dullesville". Cleveland State University Library. Retrieved 2013-06-25. 

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