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Pursuit of the Graf Spee (1956)
"The Battle of the River Plate" (original title)

6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 2,609 users  
Reviews: 39 user | 17 critic

A true WW2 story: the British Navy must find and destroy a powerful German warship.

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Title: Pursuit of the Graf Spee (1956)

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Nominated for 3 BAFTA Film Awards. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Gregson ...
Captain Bell - H.M.S. Exeter
...
Commodore Harwood-H.M.S. Ajax
Ian Hunter ...
Captain Woodhouse - H.M.S. Ajax
...
Captain Parry - H.M.N.Z.S. Achilles
...
Captain Dove - M.S. Africa Shell
Lionel Murton ...
Mike Fowler
Anthony Bushell ...
Mr. Millington Drake - British Minister, Montevideo
Peter Illing ...
Dr. Guani - Foreign Minister, Uruguay
...
Captain McCall - R.N., British Naval Attache for Buenos Aires
...
Lieutenant Commander Medley R.N.
John Chandos ...
Dr. Langmann - German Minister, Montevideo
Douglas Wilmer ...
M. Desmoulins - French Minister, Montevideo
William Squire ...
Ray Martin
Roger Delgado ...
Captain Varela - Uruguayan Navy
Andrew Cruickshank ...
Captain Stubbs - 'Doric Star'
Edit

Storyline

In the fall of 1939, the German heavy cruiser (referred to as a pocket battleship) Graf Spee seems to have command of the Atlantic. In the first three months of World War II, she was responsible for sinking 9 ships. The British sent three cruisers commanded by Commodore Henry Harwood to confront her. The battle took place on December 13, 1939 and the British came out on top. The Graf Spee headed for the neutral harbor of Montevideo, Uruguay. They were given only a short time to effect repairs and the British did their best to make them believe a British fleet of 6 or 8 ships awaited them. Rather than chance the loss of his men, the German captain ordered the Graf Spee scuttled. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The tremendous story of the victory over the Graf Spee. See more »


Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

November 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Pursuit of the Graf Spee  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(VistaVision)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael Powell had been a big fan of Noel Coward's In Which We Serve (1942), which acted as inspiration for him. See more »

Goofs

The German Navy had no capacity to refuel and resupply alongside and underway. The seamanship required was exclusive to the US and its allies at least through the 1970's. See more »

Quotes

Captain Langsdorff 'Admiral Graff Spee': [to Captain Dove] Every commander is alone, Captain.
See more »

Crazy Credits

I.N.S. Delhi (formerly Achilles) as H.M.N.Z. Ship Achilles See more »

Connections

Featured in The Story of Making the Film They're a Weird Mob (1966) See more »

Soundtracks

Cabalgata de los Gauchos
(uncredited)
Music by Brian Easdale
Lyrics by Manuel Salina
Performed by April Olrich (dubbed by Muriel Smith)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Excellent well-balanced war film
10 May 2004 | by (Victoria, Canada) – See all my reviews

This film mixes action with respectful exploration of the main characters, on both sides of the conflict. Excellent acting all round. The plot is developed carefully and sets the stage well for the ending. The local South American scenes offer colourful counterpoints to the preceding at sea sequences.

This film in British genre with the makers' principal focii being the storyline and the acting. Fans of the U.S.-style war movies may find the film too understated at times. They will also find the use of models for some of the battle scenes less than convincing when compared to the larger-than-life realism of computer-generated imagery.


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