IMDb > The Battle on the River Neretva (1969)
Bitka na Neretvi
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The Battle on the River Neretva (1969) More at IMDbPro »Bitka na Neretvi (original title)

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Up 4% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Stevan Bulajic (story) and
Ratko Djurovic (story) ...
View company contact information for The Battle on the River Neretva on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
7 October 1969 (Yugoslavia) See more »
Their courage carved its own monument in a special corner of hell! See more »
World war two drama about the 1943 battle around the Neretva River between Axis forces and Yugoslav partisan units. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Nominated for Oscar. Another 1 win See more »
User Reviews:
Spectacular portrayal about war between Yugoslavian and German troops including breathtaking battles See more (19 total) »


  (in credits order)

Yul Brynner ... Vlado

Hardy Krüger ... Kranzer

Franco Nero ... Riva

Sylva Koscina ... Danica

Orson Welles ... Senator

Curd Jürgens ... Lohring

Anthony Dawson ... Morelli

Milena Dravic ... Nada

Sergey Bondarchuk ... Martin (as Sergej Bondarcuk)

Ljubisa Samardzic ... Novak
Velimir 'Bata' Zivojinovic ... Stole (as Bata Zivojinovic)
Boris Dvornik ... Stipe

Oleg Vidov ... Nikola
Pavle Vuisic ... Sofer
Howard Ross ... Mario (as Renato Rossini)
Lojze Rozman ... Ivan
Nikola-Kole Angelovski ... Zika (as Kole Angelovski)
Stojan 'Stole' Arandjelovic ... Sumadinac (as Stole Arandjelovic)
Miha Baloh ... Ustasha Commander
Faruk Begolli ... Stevo
Dusan Bulajic ... Chetnik Commander (as Dusko Bulajic)
Milena Dapcevic ... Partisan
Dragomir Felba ... Dad
Hajrudin Hadzikaric ... Nazor (as Hajro Hadjikaric)
Sibina Mijatovic ... Marija
Charles Millot ... Djuka
Ralph Persson ... Horst
Vasa Pantelic ... Major
Spela Rozin ... Aide
Bozidar Smiljanic ... Surgeon
Fabijan Sovagovic ... Bosko
Abdurrahman Shala ... Captain (as Abdurahman Salja)
Demeter Bitenc ... Schröder (as Demetar Bitenc)
Radko Polic ... Vuko
Nereo Scaglia ... Officer
Antun Tudic ... Drago
Zaim Muzaferija ... Farmer
Tomaz Sarc ... Bridge
Risto Siskov ... Wounded
Slobodan Velimirovic ... Holzhausen
Milos Kandic ... Partisan
Ranko Gucevac ... Typhus
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Sulejman Memo Begic ... Flautist
Mirko Boman ... Photographer
Uros Glovacki ... Doctor
Petar Kralj ... Partisan
Sime Jagarinac ... Partisan (uncredited)
Branislav 'Ciga' Jerinic ... Senator (voice) (uncredited)
Veljko Mandic ... Chetnik (uncredited)
Edward Mannix ... Stole (voice: English version) (uncredited)
Tana Mascarelli ... Refugee (uncredited)
Petar Spajic-Suljo ... Refugee (uncredited)
Dragomir Stanojevic ... (uncredited)

Directed by
Veljko Bulajic 
Writing credits
Stevan Bulajic (story) and
Ratko Djurovic (story)

Ratko Djurovic (screenplay) and
Stevan Bulajic (screenplay) and
Veljko Bulajic (screenplay) and
Ugo Pirro (screenplay)

Alfred Hayes (english adaptation)

Produced by
Steve Previn .... producer: Commonwealth United
Anthony B. Unger .... executive producer
Henry T. Weinstein .... executive producer
Original Music by
Bernard Herrmann (english version)
Vladimir Kraus-Rajteric 
Cinematography by
Tomislav Pinter 
Film Editing by
Vojislav Bjenjas 
Roberto Perpignani 
Production Design by
Dusan Jericevic 
Vladimir Tadej 
Set Decoration by
Dusan Jericevic 
Vladimir Tadej 
Costume Design by
Vladimir Tadej 
Makeup Department
Saveta Kovac .... makeup artist
Mirko Mackic .... makeup artist
Berta Meglic .... makeup artist
Sukrija Sarkic .... makeup artist
Production Management
Milan Cvetkovic-Ciga .... unit manager (as Milan Cvetkovic)
Zdravko Mihalic .... production manager
Nikola Popovic .... unit production manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Stipe Delic .... second unit director
Gojko Kastratovic .... assistant director
Dragan Kresoja .... assistant director
Krsto Petanjek .... first assistant director
Ljubomir Sikic .... second assistant director (as Ljubo Sikic)
Art Department
Pablo Picasso .... painter: original artwork (uncredited)
Sound Department
Italo Cameracanna .... foley artist
Italo Cameracanna .... sound effects editor
Jean Nény .... dubbing mixer
Mladen Prebil .... sound recordist
Alex Pront .... dubbing mixer
Eva Zora .... sound editor
Slavoljub Plavsic-Zvonce .... stunts
Dragomir Stanojevic .... stunts (as Dragomir Stanojevic-Bata Kameni)
Camera and Electrical Department
Djordje Jolic .... camera operator
Velja Sakota .... assistant camera (as Velija Sakota)
Animation Department
Pablo Picasso .... painter
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Borka Subaranovic .... wardrobe
Editorial Department
J.P. Besnard .... assistant editor
Jelena Bjenjas .... assistant editor
Roger Dwyre .... supervising editor
Michèle Neny .... assistant editor
Music Department
Peter Pitt .... music editor

Production Companies
  • Bosna Film (produced by) (as United Yugoslavia Producers Film Production Organisation: US version)
  • Jadran Film (produced by) (as United Yugoslavia Producers Film Production Organisation: US version)
  • Kinema Sarajevo (produced by) (as Kinema) (as United Yugoslavia Producers Film Production Organisation: US version)
  • Radna Zajednica Filma (produced by) (as United Yugoslavia Producers Film Production Organisation: US version)
  • Igor Film (co-producer) (as Igor Film - Roma)
  • Eichberg-Film (co-producer) (as Eichberg Film - München)
  • Commonwealth United Entertainment (with the cooperation of) (as Commonwealth United Entertainment - London - New York)
DistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Bitka na Neretvi" - Italy (original title)
"The Battle of Neretva" - Australia (video title), Canada (English title) (imdb display title), International (English title) (alternative title)
"Battle of Neretva" - International (English title) (informal title)
"The Battle of the Neretva" - International (English title) (informal title)
"The Battle of the River Neretva" - USA (alternative title)
See more »
175 min | USA:105 min
Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Despite its all-star cast and the huge popularity of World War II films at the UK box office, this never got a British cinema release.See more »
Movie Connections:


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11 out of 12 people found the following review useful.
Spectacular portrayal about war between Yugoslavian and German troops including breathtaking battles, 6 March 2014
Author: ma-cortes from Santander Spain

In January 1943 during WWII , Yugoslavian partisans are facing German and Italian troops . German Army afraid of Allied invasion of Balkans, launched great offensive against Yugoslav Partisans in Western Bosnia , as these one battle for freedom . The only way out for Partisan forces and thousands of refugees was the bridge on the river Neretva. The name Neretva, of the film's English title The Battle of the River Neretva or The Battle of the Neretva, is a name of Illyrian origin, and is the largest river of the eastern part of the Adriatic Sea basin and is situated in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia.

Big budget war movie contains thrills , emotion , historical events and impressive battles with a cast of thousands . However , lost continuity with excessive cuts . This movie's massive budget was personally approved by then Yugoslav president Tito. It was the first of the Yugoslav World War II film productions that were sponsored by the Yugoslav Government State and with funds provided by fifty-eight Yugoslave state . Very good main and support cast such as Yul Brynner as Vlado , Hardy Krüger as Col. Kranzer , Franco Nero as Capt. Michele Riva , Sylva Koscina as Danica , Orson Welles as Chetnik Senator , Curd Jürgens as Gen. Lohring ,Anthony Dawson and director Sergey Bondarchuk as Martin . At the time of its production, this was the most expensive film ever made in Eastern Europe ,outside the Soviet Unión . This movie was originally released at 175 minutes but was reduced by its US distributors to only 102 minutes when released in America. Atmospheric cinematography by Tomislav Pinter , though to need a good remastering . Evocative and military musical score by the classic Bernard Herrmann , Hitchcock's usual composer . Great production design and breathtaking outdoors . To shoot a railway bridge being blown-up, the movie's director, Veljko Bulajic wished to do it for real as it would, he believed, act as a tourist attraction after the shoot. A full-scale replica railway bridge was built in Jablanica and blown up but the smoke from the blasting prevented any visible and usable shots. The bridge was then repaired, re-built for a second time, and blown up again with the same result. Finally, to capture the bridge being blown up, a small-scale miniature model was used. The motion picture was regularly directed by Veljko Bulajic, including excessive cuts and some scenes with no sense . It was the most expensive Yugoslav movie ever made and taking sixteen months in production to shoot and complete.

The picture was based on historical deeds , these are the followings : The Battle of the Neretva was a World War II battle launched by the Nazis and running between January and April 1943 in the environs of the River Neretva, Herzegovina, then Nazi German occupied Yugoslavia. The Battle was code-named Fall Weiss and was named after this neighboring Neretva River. The battle was a combined Nazi strategic plan involving Axis Allies Italy, Croatian Ustasha (Croatian Revolutionary Movement) and Chetniks (Serbian Anti-Communist Volunteer Militia) units to wipe out the Yugoslav Partisans from German Nazi occupied Yugoslavia. The battle of Neretva is also known as the Fourth Anti-Partisan Offensive; the Fourth Enemy Offensive, as well as The Battle for the Wounded.

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