Beat the Devil

Synopsis: A quartet of international crooks -- Peterson, O'Hara, Ross and Ravello -- is stranded in Italy while their steamer is being repaired. With them are the Dannreuthers. The six are headed for Africa, presumably to sell vacuum cleaners but actually to buy land supposedly loaded with uranium. They are joined by others who apparently have similar designs.
Director(s): John Huston
Production: American Pop Classics
  1 win.
Rotten Tomatoes:
89 min

These are

four brilliant criminals

at the climax of

their most magnificent effort.

This effort began

six months ago in Portoverto,

where we were all

to board the ship for Africa,

and they were

in a quest for uranium,

an element not one of them

knew the first thing about,

except that they'd heard

you could get dough for it.

Big dough.

Who are-? I mean,

what do you suppose they are?


Does it matter?

Well, if we're going to be

on a small boat with them

for weeks and weeks.

I only said they might be

fellow passengers.

Harry, we must beware

of those men.

They're desperate characters.

What makes you say that?

Not one of them looked

at my legs.

Good morning, Mrs. Dannreuther.

Good morning, Billy-Boy.

Care to join us

in a stroll?

Stir up the liver,

sweat out the toxins.

Help nature to help you.

Wouldn't dream of it.

Really, Billy,

you mustn't be so offhand

with Mr. Peterson.

If I were to treat him with more

than common politeness,

he'd misunderstand

and try to push me around.

Mr. Peterson is a bully.

- Billy, did you see this?

- Huh?

That man in London

has been killed.

What man?

"Paul Vanmeer,

"a high-ranking official

in the Colonial Office,

"was stabbed to death

early this morning

"by an unknown assailant

outside a club in Soho.

"This is the third crime

of violence

"to occur in that vicinity

within the past month."

What is it, Billy?

In heaven's name, Billy,

say something.

You understand, of course,

that Peterson arranged this.

It seems there's been a lot

of violence around there lately.

Oh, don't pretend to be a fool.

But look, Billy,

this happened

early Tuesday morning.

We'd all left London

well before that.

What about Jack Ross?

What about the Galloping Major?

But he only-

I thought he only stayed behind

to get that phone call

from Mombasa.

If it came through,

he'll be here this morning.


Don't get so excited.

Don't jump

to unpleasant conclusions.

Jump? They might as well

have drawn a map.

Why was Peterson worried

about Vanmeer?

What made him think

he was dangerous?

He was afraid Vanmeer

wouldn't stay bought.

He was afraid he'd get

the wind up after we'd gone.

He had visions

of him trotting upstairs

to his superiors

and announcing,

"I have certain information

that certain persons

are paid certain sums

of money-"

Don't talk so loud, Billy.

"- to obtain illegal rights

to certain mineral supplies."

That Indian-

That rajah or whatever he was.

- that you worked

for in the old days.

He killed a lot of people,

didn't he?

Ah, but he had a better style.


he was out for a kingdom

half the size of France.

What's the difference between

that and millions of dollars?

We must think

of the future, Billy.

This is our big chance.

It may be our last.

Except for Mr. Peterson,

we couldn't even pay

last night's hotel bill.

Where are you going?

I'm going down to the caf,

drink a lot of Pernod,

listen to the band.

You won't make a fuss,

will you?

It doesn't do

to make a fuss.

You have to think

of the main objective.


it doesn't do to be fussy.

It's your move,



The luggage is in there.

Bring it up.

Harry, look.

The desperadoes.


Not quite

in our contract, Billy.

Hard liquor before noon.

I'm celebrating.

Celebrating what?

The safe arrival of the major.

He came galloping

in a minute ago,

looking tired

but satisfied.

I take it his mission

was accomplished.

Yes. Well, it's getting on

for lunchtime, gentlemen.

I'll see you later, Billy.

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Truman Capote

Truman Garcia Capote (; born Truman Streckfus Persons, September 30, 1924 – August 25, 1984) was an American novelist, short story writer, screenwriter, playwright, and actor. Many of Capote's short stories, novels, plays, and nonfiction are recognized as literary classics, including the novella Breakfast at Tiffany's (1958) and the true crime novel In Cold Blood (1966), which he labeled a "nonfiction novel". At least 20 films and television dramas have been produced from Capote novels, stories, and plays. Capote rose above a childhood troubled by divorce, a long absence from his mother, and multiple migrations. He had discovered his calling as a writer by the age of 8, and for the rest of his childhood he honed his writing ability. Capote began his professional career writing short stories. The critical success of one story, "Miriam" (1945), attracted the attention of Random House publisher Bennett Cerf, and resulted in a contract to write the novel Other Voices, Other Rooms (1948). Capote earned the most fame with In Cold Blood, a journalistic work about the murder of a Kansas farm family in their home. Capote spent four years writing the book aided by his lifelong friend Harper Lee, who wrote To Kill a Mockingbird (1960).A milestone in popular culture, In Cold Blood was the peak of Capote's literary career. In the 1970s, he maintained his celebrity status by appearing on television talk shows. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Beat the Devil" STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 8 Feb. 2023. <>.

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