The Silent Enemy


Directed By

William Fairchild


Directed by William Fairchild, The Silent Enemy is based on the real Lionel ‘Buster’ Crabb who vanished during a reconnaissance mission for the MI6, played by Laurence Harvey (Innocents in Paris, I Am A Camera) and is notable for its remarkable and pioneering underwater action sequences as well as being credited as inspiration for Ian Fleming to write Thunderball.

In 1941, Britain was sustaining enormous losses fighting a war on three fronts against an ever increasing Axis power. To add to their problems, the Italians have recently created a new form of warfare – Frogmen – an intrepid band of men who travel astride small torpedo-type vessels, and attach explosive charges to the hulls of enemy ships, below their waterline.

A young Naval Lieutnant, ‘Buster’ Crabb, an expert in mine and bomb disposal, is sent to Gibraltar to try and combat this new threat. Never having dived before, he sets to work to master the technique of underwater operations, and soon he and his team are able to locate many of the frogmen’s charges and render them harmless. But with an invasion of North Africa imminent, time is not on the Allies’ side. Also starring Michael Craig (Yield to the Night, The Angry Silence), Dawn Addams (The Hour of 13), John Clements(Four Feathers) and Sidney ‘Sid’ James (The Lavender Hill Mob).

Laurence Harvey, Dawn Addams, Michael Craig, John Clements, Gianna Maria Canale
Other Credits

Writen by William Fairchild, adapted from the book “Commander Crabb” by Marshall Pugh
Cinematography by Otto Heller

Release Date
11 April 2022
  • New The Real Commander Crabb: Interview with author Tim Binding
  • Commander Crabb Mystery (1956)
  • Behind the Scenes stills gallery
Restoration Details

For the 2022 restoration of The Silent Enemy, STUDIOCANAL went back to the original camera negative which was scanned and restored in 4K to produce a brand new HD master

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