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Play Dirty (1969)

PG  |   |  Adventure, Drama, War  |  1 January 1969 (UK)
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 2,074 users  
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The Dirty Dozen meet the Stiff Upper Lip. A British Petroleum executive (Michael Caine) is assigned to work with the British Army in North Africa handling port duties for incoming fuels. ... See full summary »


(as Andre De Toth)


(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Capt. Douglas
Capt. Cyril Leech
Col. Masters
Brig. Blore
Patrick Jordan ...
Maj. Alan Watkins
Daniel Pilon ...
Capt. Allwood (Blore's adjutant at Special Forces HQ)
Martin Burland ...
Dead Officer
George McKeenan ...
Corporal at Quayside
Bridget Espeet ...
Bernard Archard ...
Col. Homerton
Aly Ben Ayed ...
Enrique Ávila ...
Kalarides (as Enrique Avila)
Mohsen Ben Abdallah ...
Mohamed Kouka ...
Takis Emmanuel ...
Kostos Manov (as Takis Emmanouel)


The Dirty Dozen meet the Stiff Upper Lip. A British Petroleum executive (Michael Caine) is assigned to work with the British Army in North Africa handling port duties for incoming fuels. This gives him the official rank of Captain in the British Army. The Colonel (Nigel Green) in charge of the Dirty Dozen is told he must have a British officer accompany his men on a dangerous mission 400 miles behind the German lines and is saddled with the Petroleum executive, who tries to argue his way out by saying that his contract states he is to only work port duties. That argument is lost on the Brigade Commander (Harry Andrews) who simply points out that the executive is wearing a British uniform. The real leader of the Dirty Dozen (Nigel Davenport), a released prisoner himself, doesn't need or want the British officer, who's supposed to be in charge, but he's promised an extra 2,000 British Pounds if he gets him back alive. Disguised as Italians, their trek across Rommel's Africa includes ... Written by AzRanger {ArizonaRanger @ Hotmail . com}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Forget the medals, throw away the rule book, if you want to survive.... Play Dirty


Adventure | Drama | War


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





| |

Release Date:

1 January 1969 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Dai shinryaku  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This writing credit is the sole film credit of Lotte Colin, mother-in-law of producer Harry Salzman. When she was younger, she had wanted to be a screenwriter, so De Toth gallantly ceded his writing credit to her. Six weeks later she died from brain tumor, but enjoyed her brief notoriety. See more »


If the Brits could overfly the fuel dump to photograph it (near the end of the film), they could bomb it. See more »


[Leech unexpected guns down a group of Bedouins]
Capt. Douglas: [startled but calm] What did you do that for?
Capt. Cyril Leech: I didn't like the tea.
See more »


Referenced in Harry Saltzman: Showman (2000) See more »


You Are My Sunshine
Lyrics and Music by Jimmie Davis (as Jimmy Davis) and Charles Mitchell
See more »

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User Reviews

A young Michael Caine at his best.
26 November 1998 | by (Perth, Western Australia) – See all my reviews

"Play Dirty" is one of those rare films that reassures you that some filmmakers are willing to try something different with a tired genre. The World War Two epic has been done a thousand times, but this one is different. Michael Caine is his brilliant self, supported ably by Nigel Davenport and Nigel Green in this film which has drawn comparisons to the "Dirty Dozen" but, I believe, strikes ground of its own. Andre de Toth directs with a style that was well before its time, giving this film something others lack - longevity. A top flick worth seeing. *Three and a half stars*

17 of 18 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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