Operation Market Garden, September 1944: The Allies attempt to capture several strategically important bridges in the Netherlands in the hope of breaking the German lines. However, mismanagement and poor planning result in its failure.
The true story of Operation Market Garden, the Allies attempt, in September 1944, to hasten the end of WW2 by driving through Belgium and Holland into Germany. The idea was for US airborne divisions to take the towns of Eindhoven and Nijmegen and a British airborne division, reinforced by a Polish airborne brigade, to take the town of Arnhem. They would be reinforced, in due course and in turn, by the British XXX Corps, land-based and driving up from the British lines in the south. The key to the operation was the bridges, as if the Germans held or blew them, the paratroopers could not be relieved. Faulty intelligence, Allied high command hubris and stubborn German resistance would ensure that Arnhem was a bridge too far. Written by
Steve McQueen and Audrey Hepburn were originally cast to play Maj. Julian Cook and Kate Ter Horst respectively. However, they were dropped when Hepburn's asking salary price was too high, and McQueen only wanted to appear in starring roles, not all-star assembled projects. There was also a story that the reason Hepburn--who had lived in German-occupied Holland during the war and had seen German soldiers shoot down civilians on the street and had friends killed in bombing raids--didn't do the film was because she found the prospect of reliving her wartime experiences too traumatic. See more »
Brigadier General James Gavin's (Ryan O'Neal) insignia of rank is incorrectly displayed on his "Ike" jacket. Brigadier Generals wear the star positioned at the middle of the epaulets rather than at the outer edge as do officers in the grade of Lieutenants through Colonel. See more »
Lt. Colonel J.O.E. Vandeleur:
Remember what the general said; we're the cavalry. It would be bad form to arrive in advance of schedule. In the nick of time would do nicely.
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What makes this movie so good is the realism, shown in every detail
I'm a big fan of war movies and I already have a nice collection on DVD. One of them is A Bridge Too Far and I can only say that it is one of my favorites in this genre (if you can make a comparison between movies like A Bridge Too Far, Saving Private Ryan, All Quiet on the Western Front, Apocalypse Now... of course). What I really don't understand is why this movie never was a big success in the cinema's. Perhaps the people had enough of war movies ... and Star Wars was very hip and new at that time of course, but personally I love this movie.
What makes this movie so good is the realism. In most of the war movies of that period, everybody speaks English. No matter if it is a German, an American,... In this movie everybody speaks the language he is supposed to speak. There even is a difference between the English of the Americans and the British. But of course the use of different languages isn't the only thing that attracted me. Another good example is the fact that they didn't try to make all the Germans look like brainless killers, monsters without any human feelings. The movie showes them the way they really were: good and hard fighters who cared about their comrades just as much as any allied soldier, but who didn't just kill for fun. (Just for your information: I'm talking about the soldiers in the Wehrmacht here and not about the SS, even though not all SS-troops where that bad either. There are good and bad people in every army.)
The effort which was put in this movie is shown in every detail. The uniforms, the weapons, the landscapes, the cities..., everything really gives you the feeling the director wanted to give an accurate vision on what happened during operation Market Garden. Images from the movie were even incorporated in a documentary on this subject. That probably shows better than anything else how good this movie really is.
You probably ask yourself if there really isn't anything negative about this movie. Of course there is, but it never really bothered me. Therefore I reward this movie with a 9/10. Perhaps a little too high according to the average IMDb user, but for me it's sure worth it.
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