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Kelly's Heroes (1970)

A group of U.S. soldiers sneaks across enemy lines to get their hands on a secret stash of Nazi treasure.

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(as Troy Kennedy Martin)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Hal Buckley ...
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Jeff Morris ...
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Tom Troupe ...
Job
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Willard (as Dean Stanton)
Dick Balduzzi ...
Gene Collins ...
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Storyline

During World War II a German Colonel is captured by the Americans but before he can be interrogated an artillery barrage hits the camp. However, Ex-Lieutenant Kelly manages to reach the Colonel, get him drunk and learn that he is on a secret mission to ship $16,000,000 of gold to a base in France. Kelly is determined to get the gold and plans for himself and a few of his fellow soldiers to slip into enemy territory and steal the bullion. Written by Dave Jenkins <david.jenkins@smallworld.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They set out to rob a bank... and damn near won a war instead! See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Comedy | War

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

23 June 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Kelly's Warriors  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The German Tiger tank commander (played by Karl-Otto Alberty) appears to be a parody--both in appearance and manner of speaking--of Marlon Brando's portrayal of German Lt. Christian Diestl in The Young Lions (1958). See more »

Goofs

When Kelly and the guys ambush the German patrol after leaving the minefield, A grenade is thrown into a group of enemy soldiers firing from across the road. We then see the grenade land, and finally detonate. The problem is that when the grenade explodes, we see the plume of smoke and debris, but we also see that the "can" is dislodged from the ground and visible. When the pyrotechnical experts set a charge for a movie set, it is loaded into a metal or thick cardboard canister and buried just below the surface, and the location carefully marked for the benefit of the actors safety. This separates the explosive compounds from ground moisture and errant spark or flame from filming any action scenes. In this case, the detonation of the charge lifted the can partially out of the ground and into camera range. See more »

Quotes

Oddball: [Sliding along the gun barrel to look out a small window] It's a mark six... And we've got it by the ass!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Italian Job (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

The Battle Hymn of the Republic
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Julia Ward Howe and music by William Steffe
Heard when the Sherman tanks catch up to the platoon
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Under-rated wartime caper.
8 September 2004 | by (Todmorden, England) – See all my reviews

Clint Eastwood reunites with his Where Eagles Dare director Brian G. Hutton for another improbable but entertaining WWII caper. Kelly's Heroes has its moments of wartime spectacle and lots of slambang action, but it also has plenty of comedy thrown in. Many critics judged the film quite harshly, groaning about how it is inappropriate for a film to mix jokes and war. But in truth, Kelly's Heroes never pretends to be a serious wartime account - and the humorous undercurrent helps the film rather than hampering it.

A bunch of American GIs are given a few days away from the battlefront during WWII. However, they are not overly impressed with the quiet, excessively peaceful and "boozeless" village where they've been told to relax. One member of the group, Kelly (Eastwood), has learned of a fortune in Nazi gold bullion hidden away in a bank in a German-occupied town some thirty or more miles behind enemy lines. He tells the other guys about it, and they decide to risk their lives to get hold of the hoard. Of course, pulling off a bank robbery is no easy task at the best of times, but when the bank is so far into enemy territory......

Eastwood is suitably laid-back here, but the real stars of the show are Telly Savalas (dynamic and hilarious as Big Joe) and Donald Sutherland (a hippy tank driver so chilled-out he's happy to eat cheese, drink wine and sunbathe in the middle of a chaotic battle!) The pyrotechnics are well-orchestrated, and Troy Kennedy Martin invests the script with the kind of amusing banter and thrilling set pieces that he gave to The Italian Job a year earlier. Kelly's Heroes is totally unsubtle and totally removed from reality - but what it lacks in tact it makes up for with spectacular destruction and bags of entertainment.


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