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The Dam Busters (1955)

Approved | | Drama, History, War | 16 July 1955 (USA)
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2:42 | Trailer

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The story of how the British attacked German dams in WWII by using an ingenious technique to drop bombs where they would be most effective.

Director:

Michael Anderson

Writers:

Paul Brickhill (book), Guy Gibson (based on Wing Comdr. Gibson's own account in "Enemy Coast Ahead") (as Wing Comdr. Gibson) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Todd ... Wing Commander Guy Gibson, V.C., D.S.O., D.F.C.
Michael Redgrave ... Doctor B. N. Wallis, C.B.E., F.R.S.
Ursula Jeans ... Mrs. Wallis
Basil Sydney ... Air Chief Marshal Sir Arthur Harris (now Marshal of the Royal Air Force) G.C.B., O.B.E., A.F.C.
Patrick Barr ... Captain Joseph (Mutt) Summers, C.B.E.
Ernest Clark ... Air Vice-Marshal The Hon. Ralph Cochrane (now Air Chief Marshal) G.B.E., K.C.B., A.F.C.
Derek Farr ... Group Captain J. N. H. Whitworth, D.S.O., D.F.C.
Charles Carson ... Doctor
Stanley Van Beers Stanley Van Beers ... Sir David Pye, C.B., F.R.S.
Colin Tapley ... Doctor W. H. Glanville, C.B., C.B.E.
Frederick Leister Frederick Leister ... Committee Member
Eric Messiter Eric Messiter ... Committee Member
Laidman Browne Laidman Browne ... Committee Member
Raymond Huntley ... Official, National Physical Laboratory
Hugh Manning Hugh Manning ... Official, Ministry of Aircraft Production
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Storyline

The British are desperate to shorten the length of WW2 and propose a daring raid to smash Germany's industrial heart. At first the objective looks impossible until a British scientist invents an ingenious weapon capable of destroying the planned target. Written by Dave Jenkins <david.jenkins@smallworld.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The story of the "bombs that had to bounce" - and the air-devils who had to drop 'em! See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 July 1955 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Dambusters See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was used as inspiration for the final battle scenes in Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977). Gilbert Taylor, Director of Photography and Stuart Freeborn, makeup supervisor for Star Wars also worked on this film. This was suggested by Alan Ladd Jr. when Lucus initially presented the idea to him for studio approval. "I'll shoot it like The Dam Busters". See more »

Goofs

Before the raid, the Lancasters are shown being loaded with machine gun ammunition. The bullets being loaded are 50 calibre, while the Lancasters, at that time, only used .303 calibre machine guns. See more »

Quotes

Gibson: [as his aircraft nears it's bombing target] Get ready to pull me out of the seat if I get hit!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The version released in the United States by Warner Bros. cuts aprox. 15 minutes, bringing the film's running time to 104 minutes. This version also changes the dog's name from 'Nigger' to 'Trigger,' but since the name is dubbed out, it's a very noticeable change. The uncut 119 minute version is available on DVD in the UK. See more »

Connections

Featured in Al Murray's Great British War Movies (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

The Dam Busters
March
by Eric Coates
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Don't forget Star Wars!
7 February 2004 | by dmblanchSee all my reviews

I plowed through the most recent 5 user reviews of this movie, burrowing past the recitations of historical minutiae and the quibbles about its 50 year old (un)special effects, and thought to myself that everyone missed the point.

Yes, the effects are crude -- the film was made in 19-fricking-54, people! Yes, it gets some of the historical details wrong -- it's entertainment, people! The real point is that it's a fantastic yarn, told with great skill and excitement. When I first saw it (as a teen, before Star Wars) I was glued to the screen. I still am today. And evidently, I'm not alone because in 1977 a certain geeky film maker from Northern California stole a large portion of Dam Busters, mixed in a heapin' helpin' of Hidden Fortress, and peppered it all with a dash of Laurel & Hardy & Flash Gordon, calling it Star Wars.

So I'm giving props where props are due. Don't miss this classic.


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