The Siege of Sidney Street (1960)

Genres - Drama, Historical Film  |   Sub-Genres - Political Drama  |   Release Date - Oct 11, 1960 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 93 min.  |   Countries - UK  |  
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A real-life incident became the basis for this highly fictionalized drama about a January 1911 confrontation between political anarchists and London police in that city's Whitechapel district that resulted in an infamous, blazing gun battle. Sara (Nicole Berger) is an orphaned Russian girl who works as a singer in a nightclub. There she meets Peter (Peter Wyngarde), anarchist leader of expatriate Latvians agitating for the independence of their home country following the failed revolt of 1905. At first, Sara is sympathetic to Peter and his cause, but she soon discovers that the rebels are using whatever means necessary, including robbery and murder, to raise money for their crusade, and that Peter himself has an overly pragmatic, callous attitude toward the taking of innocent life. The group's nefarious activities have attracted the attention of London police, and an inspector, Mannering (Donald Sinden) goes undercover with the anarchists in order to help bring them to justice. Mannering feels sympathy for Sara and befriends her, coming to understand her lonely attraction to Peter. The gang's violent onslaught continues unabated and results in a raid that pits gang members against hundreds of armed police.

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Keywords

against-the-system, anarchy, battle [war], city, club [organization], conflict, criminal, finances, gangster, government, group, hideout, inspection, invasion, killing, nightclub, oppression, orphan, police, politician, robbery, Russia, ruthlessness, songwriter, underground [counterculture], urban, street