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The War Lover (1962)

 -  Adventure | Drama | War  -  25 October 1962 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 983 users  
Reviews: 25 user | 4 critic

Buzz Rickson is a dare-devil World War II bomber pilot with a death wish. Failing at everything not involving flying, Rickson lives for the most dangerous missions. His crew lives with this... See full summary »



(screenplay), (novel)
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Title: The War Lover (1962)

The War Lover (1962) on IMDb 6.7/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
'Buzz' / Buzz Rickson
'Bo' / Ed Bolland
Shirley Anne Field ...
Gary Cockrell ...
Lynch: Crew of 'The Body'
Junior' / Junior Sailen: Crew of 'The Body
Bill Edwards ...
Brindt: Crew of 'The Body'
Chuck Julian ...
Lamb: Crew of 'The Body'
Handown: Crew of 'The Body'
Al Waxman ...
Prien: Crew of 'The Body'
Tom Busby ...
Farr: Crew of 'The Body'
George Sperdakos ...
Bragliani: Crew of 'The Body'
Bob Kanter ...
Haverstraw: Crew of 'The Body'
Jerry Stovin ...
Vogt (as Edward Bishop)
Richard Leech ...


Buzz Rickson is a dare-devil World War II bomber pilot with a death wish. Failing at everything not involving flying, Rickson lives for the most dangerous missions. His crew lives with this aspect of his personality only because they know he always brings them back alive. Written by KC Hunt <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Some men love war the way others love women. This is the story of both kinds! See more »


Adventure | Drama | War


Approved | See all certifications »





Release Date:

25 October 1962 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The War Lover  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Warren Beatty turned down the lead role. See more »


The short life vests the bomber crews wear are clearly post-war issue, not World War II-era "Mae Wests." See more »


Daphne Caldwell: Have you ever been in love, Captain? I'm serious, have you?
Captain Buzz Rickson: In wartime you don't fall in love, you make love. You know what I mean?
See more »


Featured in The Many Faces of...: Michael Crawford (2013) See more »


Roll Me Over
Written by Robert Musel and Desmond O'Connor
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User Reviews

An excellent novel that translated into a so-so motion picture.
29 July 1999 | by (Bozeman, Montana) – See all my reviews

War is a wrenching experience. Whether experienced in far off foreign lands on the battlefield or at home in the living room gathered around the radio to hear the latest news, those who experience it are often moved to put their physical and emotional experiences down on paper. Later, others are moved to attempt to turn those writings into motion pictures. The process just doesn't always work perfectly. More often than not the emotions that can be expressed beautifully in words by an excellent writer like John Hersey just cannot be caught on screen.

It is really hard to define exactly what kept "The War Lover" from becoming a first rate film. The production effort was definitely first rate, and the casting was excellent. The framework of this move is all there. It is well filmed, well acted, well directed and well produced. Even the use of the black and white format works. It not only allowed the use of actual combat air footage, but also provided a gritty quality that fits the material nicely. The adaptation of the dialog is good. It may just be that the emotions which Mr. Hersey put into his novel just can't be translated onto the screen, no matter who tries to do it.

I like this movie despite its shortcomings. I occasionally watch it when a nostalgia for the "bad old, good old days" of WW II gets hold of me, usually on a dreary winter evening when it gets dark around 4:30 in the afternoon, and I enjoy it. Watch this one for the realism of its depiction of the air war over Europe from 1942 to 1945.

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