Detailed and fascinating documentary telling the history of the famous German battleship of World War II. The urgent British hunt and the German ship's efforts to escape are described ... See full summary »
Chronicles the breakout of the Bismarck during the early days of World War Two. Seen both from the point of view of the many naval vessels on both sides and from the central headquarters of the British where the search for the super battleship was controlled. Written by
John Vogel <email@example.com>
According to special effects cinematographer L.B. Abbott, the miniatures were photographed with spherical (non-anamorphic) lenses. This made it easier to force the perspective of the image to make the miniatures appear bigger and further apart. The conversion of the spherical footage to CinemaScope required the use of an optical printer with an anamorphic lens. This method of shooting with spherical lenses, yet converting the footage to anamorphic, is now commonly used and is called Super 35. See more »
There are various dialogues throughout the movie, referring to whether it is, in fact, day or night in the 'real world' above the bunker complex of Operational HQ. Although a most effective contrivance to convey to the audience just how physically isolated the War Room Staff must have felt in their underground world, this is a total conceit on the part of the scriptwriter/s. Organizing the destruction of the great Bismarck required extremely precise coordination of many of the Royal Navy's vast resources. In fact, timing to the minute, if not the second was not just required, it was essential. Therefore, the staff involved and, in particular, Captain Shepard would have known EXACTLY what time it was, day or night, at any given moment, because all militaries use a 24 hour clock, but in this movie they are incorrectly using civilian AM/PM 12 hour clock time - perhaps even better than the poor hapless souls above ground who were being constantly 'Blitzed' at that particular stage of WWII. See more »
Captain John Leach:
[after the sinking of HMS Hood]
Yeoman... Make to Admiralty from Prince of Wales. Tell them... Tell them the Hood has blown up.
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Opening credits prologue: LONDON MAY 1941 See more »
For starters, this picture was thankfully filmed in black and white. This is only appropriate for gray colored ships shooting it out in the North Atlantic. The performers were, for the most part, convincing. The movie got a little risky by using a fictional character (played by Kenneth More) for the lead role, and delving a bit into his personal life. But it didn't get out of hand. The movie takes just the right amount of time in developing and depicting the important events in the eight day life of the Bismarck. I got the feeling that I was actually there and watching these events take place. The movie is essentially accurate, based on accounts I have read in books; including one by the highest ranking German survivor. The depiction of the destruction of the British battle cruiser Hood was not exactly accurate, but I would rank that a minor point. Getting the ship used in the movie to blow up the same way the Hood would probably have been more trouble than it was worth. The bottom line is the ship was destroyed and only three crew members survived.
This movie is an excellent, no-nonsense portrayal of the short and dramatic life of the legendary German battleship Bismarck.
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