The Amateur

The Amateur is a 1981 Canadian crime thriller film directed by Charles Jarrott and written by Robert Littell and Diana Maddox, based on Littell's 1981 novel of the same name. It stars John Savage, Christopher Plummer, and Marthe Keller.


When his fiancée is murdered by terrorists, a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) cryptographer named Charles Heller blackmails his superiors into sending him on a field assignment into Czechoslovakia to assassinate those responsible. Just as he enters the field, the CIA locates the stolen material he had been using to blackmail the agency, eliminating their need to cooperate with him. So he is behind the Iron Curtain, inadequately trained, and without support.