Man on a Tightrope

TitleMan on a Tightrope
Publication TypeFilm
Year of Publication1953
AuthorsKazan, Elia
Running Time1h 45min
Date Released06/04/1953
Distributor20th Century Fox
CountryUnited States
Publication LanguageEnglish

Man on a Tightrope is a 1953 American film noir directed by Elia Kazan, based on a 1952 novel of the same title by Neil Paterson. Karel Cernik (Fredric March) is the owner of a small Czech circus that's been in his family for generations. When the Communists take over, officials begin to dictate almost every aspect of how the tight-knit group can operate. Karel's wife, Zama (Gloria Grahame), becomes increasingly frustrated with the restricted situation, and Karel must struggle to find a way to to escape Communist rule by fleeing the country so that the circus can thrive again. The plot is based on the true story of the escape of the Circus Brumbach from East Germany in 1950. Members of the Circus Brumbach appeared in the film version in both character roles and as extras.

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