The Challenge
The Challenge 1960.jpg
Directed byJohn Gilling
Written byJohn Gilling
Produced byJohn Temple-Smith
StarringJayne Mansfield and Anthony Quayle
CinematographyGordon Dines
Edited byAlan Osbiston and John Victor-Smith
Music byBill McGuffie
Distributed byJ. Arthur Rank Film Distributors (UK)
Release date
  • 17 May 1960 (1960-05-17)
Running time
101 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

The Challenge, released as It Takes a Thief in the United States, is a 1960 British neo noir crime film directed by John Gilling and starring Jayne Mansfield and Anthony Quayle.[1]

The film was shot in England from 12 October[2] to around December 1959. Mansfield flew back to America on the 16th, after she finished filming.[3]


Mansfield plays Billy, the ruthless gang leader who persuades Maxton to take part in a big robbery. Maxton is shopped and convicted of robbery. Maxton serves his time, returns home to his son. The gang want the money which he buried but Maxton wants nothing more to do with it or them. The gang then kidnap Maxton's son and demand the money as ransom. There follows a race against time to save Maxton's son. At the end of the film, a policeman tells Maxton that the stolen money had been found three years previously.[4]


Critical reception


  1. ^ "The Challenge | BFI | BFI". Archived from the original on 12 July 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
  2. ^ Weekly Variety Magazine; 4 November 1959 issue; Page 17
  3. ^ Daily Variety Magazine; 18 December 1959 issue; Page 2
  4. ^ a b "It Takes A Thief Review". Retrieved 11 April 2014.
  5. ^ "The Challenge - Sky Movies HD". 14 May 2003. Retrieved 11 April 2014.