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In WWII Austria, Col. Alois Podhajsky must protect his beloved Lipizzaner stallions and make sure that they are surrendered into the right hands. But Patton's something of a horse fancier and can help...if he sees the stallions perform. Written by
Miracle of the White Stallions is a story set in the final days of World War II in Europe. Robert Taylor plays an Austrian Colonel in the German army. Back in his civilian days he was the head of the famous Spanish Riding School in Vienna which featured the famous Lippazaner breed of specially trained horses. The school had been operating in Vienna for four hundred years and its future in doubt with both the American and Russian armies closing in and the Lippazaner mares over in Czechoslovakia.
The performances of these horses had entertained Viennese natives and visitors for generations and they were and are considered a national treasure. The film concerns Robert Taylor's efforts to save the horses aided of course by Lilli Palmer playing his wife.
The criticism of this film is that Taylor's performance is too wooden. But I think the point is missed that he was a single minded man on a mission and apparently flunked out of diplomacy school. Fortunately he's married to Lilli Palmer who smooths a lot of rough edges out during the film. I think that's what was intended in this script.
As the German surrender and Taylor fortunately falls into the hands of the Americans instead of the Russians, he manages to interest an American major played by James Franciscus in his quest. Who then in turn interests the theater commander who is George S. Patton.
As we learned in the movie Patton, George was an old horse cavalry man and even rode in the 1912 Olympics for the United States. Good thing he was in charge instead of Montgomery. Patton is nicely played by character actor John Larch.
Others in the cast of this very nice family film are Eddie Albert as Taylor's aide and Curt Jurgens as a weary German general who helps Taylor in his hour of need.
Nice piece of family entertainment from the Walt Disney studio.
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