Former Korean War POW Bennett Marco (Sinatra), now with Army intelligence, is haunted by nightmares in which fellow soldier Raymond Shaw (Harvey) is ordered by their North Korean captors to shoot his own men. Seeking out his old platoon members, who are haunted by similar visions, Marco slowly pieces together the terrifying fact that Shaw has become the unwitting tool of a deadly communist plot. Marco must then decipher — and hopefully, derail — his friend's ultimate mission before disaster strikes.
Set at the height of the Cold War, John Frankenheimer's tingling psychological thriller has lost little of its impact. This story of a soldier brainwashed by Communists to strike at the heart of the U.S. government remains an unnerving ride, with tension gradually building to a shattering climax. All the players are first-rate, especially Angela Lansbury as Shaw's mother from hell, while Sinatra's portrayal of Marco reflects the dramatic high point of his film career. This nail-biting political thriller definitely warrants repeat viewings. Beware the inferior remake.