A young man unthinkingly throws himself into a world of political and sexual turmoil in John Schlesinger's adaptation of the novel by Ian McEwan. Leonard Markham (Campbell Scott) is a British communications and surveillance expert who is sent to Germany in the early 1950s, at the height of the Cold War. Leonard is put under the command of Bob Glass (Anthony Hopkins), an American agent who goes out of his way to show him around town. Leonard is woefully naive about most subjects not directly involving his job, and when Bob takes him to a typically decadent Berlin nightclub, he is astonished to discover that Maria (Isabella Rossellini), a beautiful and mysterious woman, announces that she's quite attracted to him. Soon Leonard is no longer a 24-year-old virgin, but (as one might expect) Maria's interest in him is not entirely a matter of physical attraction. Bob's secret project is a hidden tunnel beneath Berlin that allows his forces to tap into Russian telephone transmissions, which is Leonard's responsibility. But the Americans are also obtaining coded information that they aren't passing along to the British; while Leonard helps Bob, he's also finding out what Bob knows and passing it along to the British. However, Maria is also looking for certain information, and she sees the innocent and gullible Leonard as an easy way to get it. The Innocent was originally completed in 1993, but it was not shown in the United States until 1996, when it was given a brief theatrical release before appearing on home video.
by Mark Deming synopsis