Journey Into Fear (1943) - Rotten Tomatoes

Journey Into Fear1943

Journey Into Fear (1943)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Journey Into Fear Photos

Movie Info

In this film, Joseph Cotten stars as an American gunnery engineer up to his armpits in international intrigue. Targeted for extermination by the Gestapo, Cotten secretly books passage on a steamer bound to Batumi. From the outset, it is no secret that one of the passengers is a Nazi assassin.


Joseph Cotten
as Howard Graham
Dolores Del Rio
as Josette Martel
Ruth Warrick
as Stephanie Graham
Agnes Moorehead
as Mrs. Mathews
Jack Moss
as Banat
Hans Conried
as Oo Lang Sang the Magician
Richard Bennett
as Ship's Captain
Orson Welles
as Col. Haki
Shifra Haran
as Mrs. Haklet
View All

Critic Reviews for Journey Into Fear

All Critics (15) | Top Critics (3)

The picture gets into its most exciting pace in the concluding moments.

December 30, 2020 | Full Review…

Welles shows himself a careful student of Alfred Hitchcock, but he falls far short of the Old Master.

March 12, 2013 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Unfortunately, RKO cut it almost as badly as The Magnificent Ambersons, which was in production at the same time, and what survives is basically a lot of claustrophobic atmosphere and some fair-to-middling suspense.

January 1, 2000 | Full Review…

The atmosphere of shadowy violence and death around every comer overwhelms the picture. Such studied eeriness hasn't passed before the eyes of this reviewer in years and it soon becomes irritating.

June 10, 2021 | Full Review…

Its interest lies in Welles the performer, much like his turn in Huston's "Moby Dick," a film worth seeing for "the good parts," those being Welles as Col. Haki, and flashes of the leading man Joseph Cotten quickly became after its release.

October 13, 2020 | Rating: 2.5 | Full Review…

A visually arresting film with a nod to the quirky that just can't be beat in terms of the bizarre.

August 29, 2006 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Journey Into Fear


I thought this film about a Naval Engineer being chased by an assassin in Turkey would be better than it turned out to be. It had all kinds of opportunities to be suspenseful, but it just didn't pull it off very well. I normally like Joseph Cotten, but here he came across as more ornery than sympathetic. And he allowed himself to be hauled away by his "protectors" far too easily, without putting up much of a fight, even though his wife was being left behind without a word from him. There was far too many "coincidences" of people being in the right place at just the right time. A good try, but....try harder next time. One note: In a scene on the boat between Cotten and Dolores Del Rio, she makes the observation that she is opening up to him, but all she knows about him is that he's an engineer and has "a nice..." and then the ship's horn blares as she finishes her sentence. Surely she wasn't saying that he had a nice ass -- not in 1943? But what else could it be? Addendum: After reading the other reviews on this film, it appears that the film was re-edited post-production a la The Magnificent Ambersons. Perhaps it was similarly butchered by some inept clod with no sense of timing or suspense. Could a re-issue be in its future?

Cindy I
Cindy I

Super Reviewer

Not a bad film produce by the Mercury Theater right after Ambersons. This is not directed by Welles, but does have some of his influence. It's about a engineer (played and screenplay co-written by Cotton) who the Nazi's want dead. After a attempt on his life he sneaks out of Turkey on a boat and meets some interesting characters. It's a short film that RKO cut down, and after the cut of Amberson's and the debacle of It's all True this was the last film Welles and his Mercury Theater did with RKO.It's a fun film and had some potential, but doesn't have the zest of the rest of the Mercury Theater Productions.

cody franklin
cody franklin

Super Reviewer


a decent thriller from mercury theater with joseph cotten caught up in a ring of spies. orson has a small part as head of turkish secret police with an awesome astrakhan!

Stella Dallas
Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer

Journey Into Fear Quotes

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