An attempt to be daring, modern and "with it," even in 1968 Deadfall came across as tired, confused and dull. Director Bryan Forbes, who is capable of stylish, interesting genre work, is very much off form here; his attempts to ape Hitchcock fall quite flat, and much of the time he seems to be struggling just to get information from his convoluted screenplay across. There's a 23-minute sequence involving Michael Caine and Eric Portman attempting a heist, intercut with shots of Renata Tarrago on the guitar, that seems to have been lifted from Topkapi, but without the earlier film's ingenuity and skill; here, all it does is bring things to a dead, interminable halt. (Being largely silent, however, it does give the audience a break from the awkward dialogue.) Caine gives one of his least inspired performances, although admittedly Forbes the screenwriter has given him little to work with. Portman comes across slightly better, but nobody here can be said to be doing good work.