633 Squadron of the RAF is tasked with an operation that is vital to the Allied invasion of France. They need to destroy a German base in Norway that is producing fuel for German rockets. It is an incredibly dangerous mission: due to where it is situated, getting to the base will require daring and precise flying and then there's the hordes of anti-aircraft batteries. The Norwegian Resistance are tasked with taking out the AA guns but if anything goes wrong with the plan it will be a suicide mission.Written by
This was first announced in 1959 for John Sturges to direct. Jack Lord and Peter Lawford were to star, and they were also trying to sign William Holden. See more »
Early in the film the just-landed squadron crews gather to examine the bullet-ridden tail fin on one of their planes. During the exchange of dialogue one of the men asks for and receives a light for his cigar from one of his comrades. No air crewman in his right mind would light anything in close proximity to an as yet un-inspected combat damaged aircraft for fear of igniting any petrol that might be leaking from the damaged plane's tanks. See more »
I saw this when it first came out I was eight years old, and lived close to a WWII airfield south of London, so I was captivated by a film which gave me a wealth of fantasy to enjoy while I walked the then deserted runways of Kenley.
I have just watched the DVD. I still enjoyed the movie despite its many shortcomings. Probably the score has a lot to do with this. Ron Goodwin is a most under-rated composer. Only a master could base music on machine gun fire and end up with something so thoroughly uplifting.
Though this film does not bear excessive scrutiny, I have to applaud the hard-nosed portrayal of the fliers. It is my understanding that grieving is often a luxury in war, and one combatants did not allow themselves.
The parallel with Star Wars is valid. but the finale is something Lucas could not have contemplated without risking his box office takings!! You'll have to see it to figure out why. Oh and turn the volume up for the music.
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