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.
Mallory and Miller are back. It seems that there was traitor with them at Navarone, whom they thought was executed. But it seems that not only was he not executed, and he was not a traitor but a German spy. Intelligence believes he made it to Yugoslavia and is now with the Partisans. So, Mallory and Miller being the only ones who can positively identify him are sent along with a unit called Force 10, which is led by Colonel Barnsby, who objects to their presence. It seems that Force 10 has a mission of their own which Mallory and Miller know nothing about. When their plane is shot and most of the team is killed, they mistakenly believe that some of the locals they meet are Partisans but in reality are German Allies, so they are taken prisoner, and have to convince the German commander that they are not spies or else they will be killed. Written by
During the film, and especially the mission to infiltrate the German supply dump, none of the commandos, including Major Mallory can understand German. This is especially clear when Leskovar insists he must accompany the team to the dump as only he speaks German and, later, when the team is discussing Leskovar's encounter with the German Sergeant in the train car. All of this ignores the fact that this film is a sequel to "The Guns of Navarone" in which Mallory is specifically chosen for the mission because he speaks "German like a German." Alistair MacLean's original stories also support this fact. See more »
[inside the Partisans' cave Mallory wants to talk to Petrovitch alone to tell him he needs to kill Nikolai]
May I talk to you personally, sir?
You are talking to me personally.
No I mean alone.
No. The People's army does not conduct military business in secret.
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Opening credits prologue: SOMEWHERE IN ENGLAND 1943 See more »
World War II has spawned so many stories, films, books, songs, TV shows, from garbage to genius, that one could easily spend an a lifetime absorbed in them. Here is a basic WWII movie that tells a very straight forward story about a small group of soldiers trying to blow up a bridge in enemy held territory. It doesn't try to be Bridge on the River Kwai, another film where a small group of special forces travel (on foot I might add) to destroy a bridge important to the enemy forces.
On the plus side is that the action takes place in Yugoslavia, not the setting of too many war movies made in Hollywood, so that gives this some interesting moments (how many movies have Croatian Chetniks in them?). Also, Robert Shaw, good in anything, and Edward Fox have a great rapport, trading lines with impeccable timing. It would be easy to believe they are lifelong friends in real life the way they portray their characters. Harrison Ford gives a solid performance as a young overachieving officer, helping the subplot of the new blood clashing with the old veterans. Barbara Bach is beautiful, but not much other reason for her to be around. Carl Weathers actually gives a nice performance as the rebellious black soldier, implausibly brought along by weirdly improbable circumstances. Facing the fact that the Armed Forces were segregated during WWII, it seems like the makers wanted to have a black included in the movie and had to make up some way to do that, coming up with a ridiculously contrived way to have him along. It's unfortunate they couldn't come up with something better because, though Weathers is likable and his character brings something to the party, they way they did it undermines the plotline.
The action is okay, though the payoff at the end, clever as it is, ultimately fails because of the special effects--they just weren't that well done; they seemed like they came from a grade b movie.
If you've seen some WWII movies like A Bridge Too Far, Kelly's Heros, Battle of the Bulge, the Devil's Brigade, or Where Eagles Dare and liked them, definitely give this one a try. Not a classic, but a decent addition to the crowd.
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