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.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Siem Vroom ...
Marlies van Alcmaer ...
Underground Leader's Wife (as Marlies Van Alcmaer)
Erik van 't Wout ...
Underground Leader's Son (as Eric Van't Wout)
...
Hans von Borsody ...
General Blumentritt (as Hans Von Borsody)
Josephine Peeper ...
Cafe Waitress
...
Paul Maxwell ...
...
...
...
Walter Kohut ...
Peter Faber ...
...
Frank Grimes ...
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Storyline

It is near the end of WWII. The Germans have lost most of France, and the Allied forces decide to give them the final hit. They plan to drop thousands of paratroopers in the Netherlands and keep a few key positions there, until reenforcements arrive. The most important spot is the bridge of Arnhem; once it's captured, it can block everything west of Germany Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos <makzax@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Out of the sky comes the screen's most incredible spectacle of men and war!

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

15 June 1977 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Brücke von Arnheim  »

Box Office

Budget:

$26,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$50,800,000 (USA)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)| (70 mm prints)

Color:

(archive footage)| (colour) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The producers were only able to locate four of the many Sherman tanks seen on the screen. The rest were plastic molds set on top of 88" Land Rovers. VW Beetle chassis were used for German Kubelwagens. The tank treads didn't reach the ground, but the film is edited so that this isn't noticeable (except in the section after Elliott Gould cries "Roll the fuckers / Roll 'em, fellas" there are shots of the tanks rolling over the bridge. One tank is seen silhouetted against the background and its tracks are clearly not moving as fast as they should be if the tank were real). At approx 57mins into the film as the Shermans are heading up the road, the last Sherman seen(5th) is floating a few inches off the ground. If you look quickly you'll just see the rear left wheel from one of the Landrovers. See more »

Goofs

As the Dutch Advisor Harry yells at Gen. Gavin after landing "you all right?" Several men in the background are carrying K98 German rifles instead of M-1 Garands, could be a war trophy but they carry no other rifle, and they just landed and wouldn't have time to get pick one up. See more »

Quotes

[Before jumping out of a plane]
Maj. General Stanislaw Sosabowski: God bless Field Marshall Montgomery.
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Connections

Referenced in Little Mosque on the Prairie: A Lease Too Far (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

3rd Movement
(from Brandenburg Concerto No. 6 in B-Flat Major, BWV. 1051) (uncredited)
Music by Johann Sebastian Bach
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Under-rated war epic.
10 November 2004 | by (Todmorden, England) – See all my reviews

Quite a few bad things have been written about A Bridge Too Far. Richard Attenborough's elephantine recreation of the battle for several strategically valuable Dutch bridges in the winter of 1944 is a star-studded, lengthy and exhausting film (and many critics at the time seemed to be of the opinion that it collapsed beneath its own weight). Almost thirty years on, the film is now viewed somewhat more favourably. It may feel 30 minutes too long, and the need for so many stars in so many tiny parts is questionable, but A Bridge Too Far successfully shows a fierce episode of the Second World War in all its chaotic glory. Incredibly, there's no use of the computer generated effects during the big battle scenes that it is relied upon in modern films like Gladiator and Troy. The scenes in this film were shot pretty much as you see them - so the 35,000 parachutists storming Holland, the river crossing led by Robert Redford under intense enemy fire, and other such staggering combat sequences were filmed with thousands of extras and a good deal of meticulous planning and preparation.

The film is based upon Operation Market Garden, an Allied plot hatched towards the end of 1944 with the intention of ending the war in Europe. The concept behind the plan was to drop 35,000 soldiers into Holland approximately 60 miles beyond the German lines, to seize six vital bridges, and to reinforce the paratroopers by sending in thousands of ground troops. However, various mishaps jeopardised the mission and eventually the Allies were cut off and had to withdraw, suffering severe losses.

As stellar casts go, A Bridge Too Far still takes some rivalling. Among the many famous actors involved, these are just a few: Sean Connery, Robert Redford, Laurence Olivier, Dirk Bogarde, James Caan, Ryan O'Neal, Gene Hackman, Michael Caine, Anthony Hopkins and Elliott Gould. It seems pointless for some of the actors to be cast in these roles - true enough, Connery, Bogarde and Hopkins get decent roles and a fair bit of screen time, but was it really worth paying Redford $2,000,000 for his ten minute heroics? Could a decent actor have not handled the role for a fraction of that amount? Is Gene Hackman really the correct choice for Polish officer Major General Stanislaw Sosabowski? Should a light comic actor like Elliott Gould be doing his cigar-chomping "fun" turn in a movie as serious as this?

Luckily, the film is a big success on other levels. The cinematography is extraordinary; the music is suitably stirring; the potentially confusing story is handled with clarity and true-to-the-facts sensitivity; and amid the chaos a number of very memorable scenes emerge. A Bridge Too Far is a very good war film - maybe the biggest war film ever conceived (The Longest Day and Saving Private Ryan included) - and I feel that, although it has a few casting flaws, it is in almost every other department a great, great achievement.


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The sound makes it unwatchable dtmuller
Why was this regarded as a failure? greensville
It took 14 superstars.... Blakefield
Actual Extended Theatrical/Television Version tomh63
WAAAYYY Too Strong Anti-War Message brasidas1970
Film is unfair to General Browning dazfiddy
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