5.9/10
554
21 user 3 critic

Paratrooper (1953)

The Red Beret (original title)
Approved | | Drama, War | 1 October 1953 (Japan)
In 1940, an American claiming to be Canadian volunteers for the British Army's paratroop school.

Director:

Terence Young

Writers:

Richard Maibaum (screenplay), Frank S. Nugent (screenplay) (as Frank Nugent) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Alan Ladd ... Canada
Leo Genn ... Major Snow
Susan Stephen ... Penny Gardner
Harry Andrews ... R.S.M.
Donald Houston ... Taffy
Anthony Bushell ... General Whiting
Patric Doonan Patric Doonan ... Flash
Stanley Baker ... Breton
Lana Morris ... Pinky
Tim Turner ... Rupert
Michael Kelly Michael Kelly ... Dawes
Anton Diffring ... The Pole
Thomas Heathcote ... Alf
Carl Duering ... Rossi
John Boxer John Boxer ... Flight Sgt. Box
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Storyline

Alan Ladd is the focus of this story based on the wartime raid on the German radar station at Bruneval. The raid was a combined services operation and the 2nd Battalion of the 1st Parachute Brigade was led by Major 'John Frost' (Major Snow). An RAF radar expert, Flight Sergeant C.W.H. Cox (Sergeant Box) accompanied the raiders to tell them what to take back to England. Written by Steve Crook <steve@brainstorm.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

ALAN LADD At His Greatest - ripping your emotions with thrills! See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

1 October 1953 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Paratrooper See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$700,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Color:

Color (Colour by) (Technicolor) (as Color by in U.S. print)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first film of Harry Andrews See more »

Goofs

When the British paratroopers were lined up in the American C-47, the static lines on their parachutes were not hooked up to the overhead cable which pulls the ripcord as they exit the aircraft, as shown in the next scene. In fact, the cable was missing in this aircraft interior shot. See more »

Quotes

R.S.M.: I'm sorry for the man who hears the pipes, and who wisnae born in Scotland.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in My Name Is Bond... James Bond (1979) See more »

Soundtracks

Red River Valley
(uncredited)
Traditional, lyrics modified as a parachutists' song
Sung on the pub, and whistled and hummed throughout the film as a theme
See more »

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User Reviews

 
More than just an Alan Ladd movie.
26 September 2010 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

The Red Beret (AKA Paratrooper) is directed by Terence Young and stars Alan Ladd & Leo Genn. It is based on the book of the same name written by Hilary Saint George Saunders.

"This story tells of one small part of the war. The story of those men who joined the parachute regiment — Men from many different countries and creeds, who were to find themselves one day in a parachute training establishment. Only in the telling and in the spirit of these men themselves do history and fiction meet — even if we dare not show in this film what some of these men did in fact and in real life achieve. For nobody would ever believe it."

Somewhere in England. The year 1940 after Dunkirk.

A rather popular film at the Worldwide box office on release, this in spite of some British complaints about American actor Ladd playing the lead in a British war story, The Red Beret is serviceable as an action character piece. The story is in effect a play on real war hero John Frost, who is here played by Genn as Major Snow (Frost was portrayed by Anthony Hopkins in A Bridge Too Far). With this in mind it's obvious that Ladd, who does OK in his role of the reluctant leader, is purely there for American audience enticement. However, the makers do a good enough job of not letting Ladd's part in the film be the sole point of reference and detract from the real heroes from which the core of the film is based. There's some poor technical aspects to put up with, such as major superimposed sequences that stick out like a sore thumb, but these are off set a touch by the well constructed battle scenes.

If in an undemanding war film mood this just about leaves a favourable impression. 6/10


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