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The House on Carroll Street 1988
Description: Emily Crane is fired after refusing to give names to a 1951 House Un-American Activities Committee, and takes a part-time job as companion to an old lady. One day her attention is drawn to a noisy argument being conducted largely in German in a neighbouring house, the more so since one of those involved is her main senator prosecutor. Starting to look into things, she gradually enlists the support of FBI officer Cochran who was initially detailed to check her out. Just as well when things turn nasty
Released: 04 Mar 1988 Director: Peter Yates Writers: Walter Bernstein Actors: Kelly McGillis, Jeff Daniels, Mandy Patinkin, Jessica Tandy Genres: Thriller
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The House on Carroll Street Reviews:

**SPOILERS** Beautifully photographed period piece, Fresh York Town circa 1951,about a young girls asst. image editor Emily Crane, Kelly McGillis, who's allow go by her employer Life Magazine for refusing to give or name names to the House Un-American Activities Committee. Getting a job as a reader for an old girls Miss. Venable ,Jessica Tandy, Emily one afternoon notices this young boy Alan ,Jonathan Hogan, across the method in the house on Carroll Road through the window talking to Ray Salwen, Mandy Patinkin,the boy who interrogated her at the HUAC hearings. Becoming obsessed with the young boy Emily follows him on the subway to Rockaway Queens and finds that he spends his time going to mostly Jewish cemeteries taking down the names of those recently departed? Not knowing what she's getting into Emily uncovers a secret plan to smuggle ex-Nazi scientist's into the US, giving them Jewish name and identities as a cover! These ex-Nazis are to be test by the US Government in their expertise in the war vs the Red Menace, or International Communism. This secret government operation is headed by the aforementioned anti-Communist fan and borderline psycho HUAC investigator Ray Salwen. It was Salwen who soon shows how unstable he is by pouring an whole bottle of ketchup, his method of emphasizing the Red Manace, over a clean white table-cloth in order to impress and present a shocked Emily in how the menace of Communisum has spread over the globe! Emily feels guilty when Alan, who place his believe in her , is murdered before he can talk to G-Man Cochran, Jeff Daniels, who became romantically involved with her. Salwen who's involved with the Nazis being smuggled into the country has his goons test to murder Emily. This before she let's the cat out of the bag about the US Government being allied with high ranking members of the defunct Adolf Hitler's Germany. Salwen ends up on the losing end when he makes a fatal miss-step on the roof of Grand Central Station and takes the fall for what his superiors have been doing since the end of WWII: secretly aiding ex-Nazis in the fight vs Commnisum. P.S the film "The House on Carroll Street" is not as far fetched as one might think with President Turman passing the secret order Project, or Operation, Paper-Clip in September 1946 having the US Immigration Department let hundreds of ex-Nazi scientists, which many of Truman's supporters and admirers tell that he didn't know about, into the US. This was done in order to support in developing rockets and another military hardware in fighting the Communists Menace overseas in far away territories like Korea and Vietnam.


Perfect and entertaining film in many regards. The 1950's atmosphere is caught very well: elegant clothing, magnificent cars, leafy Fresh York streets, Fresh York's Grand Central Station and a cameo role for the shiny Chicago Express. The OST by George Delarue too is worth while listening to. It does more than just underpin the action in the movie, it stands perfectly well on its own legs.I've noticed some reviewers made a url between the looks of Ray Salwen (Mandy Patinkin) and a young Richard Nixon, who was heading the House on Un- American Activities Committee (HUAC) in the early fifties. I'd rather compare the smug Salwen figure with Roy Cohn, McCarthy's right hand and ax man. (Patinkin would have been a excellent choice for the main role of "Citizen Cohn" in 1992, although James Woods too did a great job) As another reviewers have pointed out, there are indeed some similarities with Hitchcock films from the 1950's. All shots present clean streets, great looking people, shiny cars… You won't see any hoodlums, hobo's, mean looking motorcycle gang members. There's not even the page of a newspaper pushed around by the wind in the Fresh York streets. Even the terrible guys that slay the German young boy with a knife are dressed up as if they come from the horses or some fancy restaurant. The romance between McGillis and FBI boy Cochran (Daniels) too is treated in a very 1950's way. To many viewers, this will be seen as a lack of chemistry between the two main characters. However, to my h.o. an all too steamy relationship would have somehow spoiled this elegant movie, and especially slowed down the pace considerably.OK, there are a number of low points in the scenario: it's highly improbable that a hush hush operation of smuggling Nazi's into the US would have used such an "unsafe safe-house" as the one in Carroll Street. ID papers would have been arranged for, while those fight criminals were still in Europe, to reduce as much as possible the risks. And it's rather silly seeing a Senator's aide going as far as entering into Emily's bathroom. Very intimidating, OK, but I'd rather think this type of a job would have been left to some weak ranking goons. And finally, what the heck is he doing on the roof of Fresh York's Grand Central Station ??? Still, nobody complains about related weaknesses in let's tell "North by Northwest", or "Sabotage". Indeed, this film doesn't pretend being a semi-documentary, like De Niro's "Guilty by suspicion" (1991) or Citizen Cohn are. And as pure entertainment, House on Carroll Road does a great job. I'd rate it 8/10


This is a wonderfully Hitchcockian, quite realistic, but also nostalgic return to the time when some folks were looking for Communists under each bed, as well as in Hollywood and =Life= magazine. Kelly McGillis is terrific as the idealistic civil liberties kind who discovers Nazis in the garden and her own private SS boy in a Senator's office. Mandy Patinkin is really convincing as the Senate staffer who hounds McGillis from her job. He even looks a tiny like a popular politician with the initials RMN. For a bang-up thriller without any shooting, vehicle chases or explosions, this is one of the greatest videos around.



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