Mark of the Phoenix

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Mark of the Phoenix
Mark of the Phoenix film poster (1958).png
Poster for French release
Directed by Maclean Rogers
Written by Norman Hudis
Based onnovel The Phoenix Sings by Desmond Cory [1]
Produced byW.G. Chalmers
Starring Julia Arnall
Sheldon Lawrence
Anton Diffring
Cinematography Geoffrey Faithfull
Edited by Harry Booth
Music by Wilfred Burns (uncredited)
Distributed byButcher's Film Service (UK)
Release date
  • November 1958 (1958-11)(UK)
Running time
64 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

Mark of the Phoenix is a 1958 British 'B' drama film directed by Maclean Rogers and starring Julia Arnall, Sheldon Lawrence and Anton Diffring. [2] An American jewel thief comes into possession of a newly developed metal.



A newly developed and valuable metal is stolen and formed into a cigarette case for transportation to East Germany, but an American jewel thief comes into possession of it and finds himself a target.


Critical reception

The Monthly Film Bulletin wrote: "This spy story has all the usual trimmings – tough, handsome American jewel thief, portly art-collector gang leader, shot scientist, secret formula and brutal foreign agents – but almost makes up for their familiarity by lively pacing. This turns out to be the film’s sole virtue, however, since direction, dialogue and performances are on a distressingly amateurish level.” [3]

In British Sound Films David Quinlan wrote: ''Feverishly complicated thriller, not too well acted.'' [4]

The Radio Times Guide to Films gave the film 1/5 stars, writing: "This dismal low-budget thriller has a corkscrew plot involving rare metals, jewel thieves, international blackmail, the Cold War and much else. [...] The mediocre cast is typical of British B-movies of the period, with the sole exception of Anton Diffring." [5]

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  1. "Desmond Cory Book Gallery - 1950s".
  2. "Mark of the Phoenix". British Film Institute Collections Search. Retrieved 5 November 2023.
  3. "Mark of the Phoenix". Monthly Film Bulletin . 26 (300): 138. 1 January 1959.
  4. Quinlan, David (1984). British Sound Films: The Studio Years 1928–1959. London: B.T. Batsford Ltd. p. 345. ISBN   0-7134-1874-5.
  5. Radio Times Guide to Films (18th ed.). London: Immediate Media Company. 2017. p. 593. ISBN   9780992936440.