After settling his differences with a Japanese PoW camp commander, a British colonel co-operates to oversee his men's construction of a railway bridge for their captors - while oblivious to a plan by the Allies to destroy it.
"Patton" tells the tale of General George S. Patton, famous tank commander of World War II. The film begins with Patton's career in North Africa and progresses through the invasion of Europe and the fall of the Third Reich. Side plots also speak of Patton's numerous faults such his temper and tendency toward insubordination, faults that would prevent him from becoming the lead American general in the Normandy Invasion as well as to his being relieved as Occupation Commander of Germany. Written by
Anthony Hughes <email@example.com>
At the end of the film the monologue Patton gives about an ancient Roman triumph was lifted from a 1962 book by Robert Payne called "The Roman Triumph." This is from the very first paragraph: "For over a thousand years Roman conquerors returning from the wars enjoyed the honor of a triumph. In the procession came trumpeters and musicians and strange animals from the conquered territories, together with carts laden with treasure and captured armaments. The conqueror rode in a triumphal chariot, and the dazed prisoners walked in front of him. Sometimes his children, robed in white, stood with him in the chariot, or rode the trace horses. A slave stood behind the conqueror, holding a golden crown over his head, and whispering in his ear a warning that all glory is fleeting." See more »
When Gen. Montgomery is informed that Patton has taken Palermo, the Union Jack flying behind him is upside down. See more »
Now I want you to remember that no bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country.
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Opening credits prologue: KASSERINE PASS TUNISIA, 1943 See more »
PATTON was truly a shock to the system when it was released. The United States was still in the thick of the Vietnam war, and the country was extremely polarized between the hawks and the doves. Then along comes Patton, with a portrayal of a rebellious General who was always being put in his place by the establishment - even though he was, of course, a major establishment figure (generals aren't usually the most liberal or progressive types). Eisenhower (unseen) and the media are portrayed as unsympathetic to the maverick Patton, who is so single-minded in his determination to defeat the Germans you have to root for him, despite his boorish behavior.
And that is why Patton works - you have an unambiguous war against and unambiguous evil - Nazi Germany. Whereas Vietnam might have been a tough conflict for even its supporters to explain, World War Two was quite simple
we were the good guys, and they WERE the bad guys. And so you COULD root
for the US Army and Patton without feeling a tinge of guilt.
Also superb in the film is everyman Karl Malden as General Omar Bradley, providing the stable and workmanlike leader (and one who rises quicker in the ranks due to it) to Patton's egomaniac.
And Yes, George C. Scott delivers a career-defining performance that is one for the books. Could Brando or Telly Savalas have pulled off the role as well? I don't think so - it was just tailor made for Scott.
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