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The Birdmen (1971)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama, History, War  |  18 September 1971 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 189 users  
Reviews: 16 user | 1 critic

During World War II, American soldier Harry Cook is sent to Norway to aid in the defection of a scientist working on the atomic bomb for the Germans. Before they can escape Europe, they are... See full summary »

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Title: The Birdmen (TV Movie 1971)

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Cast

Cast overview:
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Major Harry Cook
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Halden Brevik / Olav Volda
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Schiller
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Tanker
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Colonel Morgan Crawford
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Focus Flaherty
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Sparrow
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Davies
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Donnelly
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Orville Fitzgerald
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Storyline

During World War II, American soldier Harry Cook is sent to Norway to aid in the defection of a scientist working on the atomic bomb for the Germans. Before they can escape Europe, they are captured and sent to a POW prison camp in a high alpine castle on the German-Swiss border. Cook must find a way to escape with the scientist before the Gestapo discover the Norwegian's true identity. Cook convinces the other prisoners to build a two person glider that can fly to Switzerland. The race is on to complete the glider before the German guards discover the plane, and the Gestapo catch up with Cook and the scientist. Written by Jeff Popp <jeff.popp@attws.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They used to boast there were only two ways to escape from Hitler's Beckstadt prison... to die...or to sprout wings

Genres:

Drama | History | War

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Details

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Release Date:

18 September 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Colditz: Escape of the Birdmen  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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(Technicolor)
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was loosely based on a true story. Allied prisoners-of-war held at Colditz Castle constructed a similar glider under the noses of their captors, but did not complete the aircraft until after D-Day. Rather than use the glider to escape, the prisoners determined to use it to coordinate their actions with Patton's forces. As it turned out, the German garrison surrendered to the Americans without firing a shot. See more »

Goofs

Before the wing snaps on the model glider, a quick shot shows the plane to have wing struts. The model glider had none. See more »

Quotes

Schiller: Major, I'm afraid we are both in a great deal of trouble.
Cook: Why don't you break out the scotch first? My leg is killing me!
See more »

Connections

References Hogan's Heroes (1965) See more »

Soundtracks

Die Gedanken Sind Frei
(uncredited)
Nineteenth Century German Folk Song
Sung by the Cast
Performed at the funeral of a slain prisoner of war
See more »

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User Reviews

 
an amazing film full of information and knowledge
17 June 2005 | by (Ottawa, Canada) – See all my reviews

Colditz Castle has always been considered a place of high security. However, if Chuck Norris had been present it would have surely ensured that more men would have escaped form this famous prison.

Set high on a hill above the small town of Colditz, the sleepy village was unaware of the tensions and drama that lived within the dark and cold walls of the castle. The lessons learned within those hallowed walls held both prisoners and guardians in good stead in the free world till this day.

Chuck Connors, a master character actor, plays a believable portrait of a man fighting against the forces of evil. His flight from the castle was quite inspiring and must be used for all future Colditz films.

Be sure to view "The Colditz Story" which can only pale against this epic.

I highly recommend it to all collectors of serious war movies.


5 of 7 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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