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An Aviation Classic
colin-barron10 August 2005
I am a great fan of "633 Squadron" and have read a few articles about the making of the film so I can correct a few errors in previous postings.

In the original 1956 novel the central character was Wing- Commander Roy Grenville. This was changed to Wing - Commander Roy Grant for the film. The script did make it clear that Grant was an ex - Eagle Squadron pilot. A number of Americans did fly for the RAF during WW2. After Pearl Harbour the Eagle Squadrons were eventually transferred to the USAAF but some Americans stayed in the RAF so it is not totally implausible to have an American leading an RAF squadron.

I agree that the Greek American actor George Chakiris does not look very Norwegian! However the casting of these two American actors (Robertson and Chakiris) was done to ensure the success of the film at the American box office. British war films with all- British casts tend to bomb at the American box office. The 1969 film "Battle of Britain" was the most successful film at the UK box office when it came out but it was a financial disaster in most other countries. That was why the American role in "Operation Market Garden" was prominently featured in the 1977 film "A Bridge Too Far".

I agree that the ending was ambiguous. In Frederick E Smith's 1976 sequel "Operation Rhine Maiden" it was made clear that Wing Cdr Grant had survived the crash and become a POW - in the film it is not clear whether he had died or just lost consciousness.

All the Mosquitoes used in the film were obtained from No 35 Civilian Anti Aircraft Cooperation Unit in Exeter which retired its last Mosquitoes only a few weeks before filming began. These civilian - piloted Mosquitoes were the last in service anywhere in the world.

A total off 11 Mosquitoes were used in the filming though only four were airworthy . Three Mosquitoes were destroyed during filming.

A few of the Mosquitoes used in the film still exist though none are currently airworthy. The B-25 Mitchell used as the camera plane still exists albeit in a derelict condition at North Weald Airfield in England.
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Fall in for the blood pumping joy of De Havilland's Mosquitoes.
hitchcockthelegend4 March 2008
A WW2 squadron of Mosquito bombers are training for a perilous mission to bomb a cliff face in Norway; with the aim to bring the cliff tumbling down on the German arms factory below it.

633 Squadron may not be a film for the War enthusiast purists? But the work done here to make this film a winner should never be understated. In this day and age it's often forgotten how these type of film's relied on good aerial photography, deft model work, and a stirring score. All of which this picture contains, thus making 633 Squadron more than a wet day crowd pleaser. Sure the intermittent scenes between the training sequences and the actual mission are mere filler, and the subplots obviously halt the flow of the movie (hello romance, hello sacrifice clichés); but what they do do is give a sort of added feel to the proceedings come the mission at the end. We do after all have to have some sort of affinity with the characters putting their lives at risk, and we get that here courtesy of a well written first half. Also boasting (in my opinion naturally) one of the greatest scores used in a War movie, courtesy of Ron Goodwin, the film triumphs because the ending is all that you hope for. In truth it's never in doubt given the build up we are given (and being the normality for many genre pieces), but with little dashes of poignancy and slivers of adrenalin rushes, the impact is akin to a jingoistic chest thudding.

Besides which, if you can't get a tingle on your neck watching the Mosquitoes fly over the Norwegian fjord? Well you got no blood in your body say I. 7/10
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Cliff Robertson!
Crimpo25 November 2005
I have a feeling this isn't the only time that Cliff Robertson played the trans-Atlantic star beefing up a late British war movie for the US market. However, Cliff is NOT playing a British squadron leader! There were a large number of Canadian and Australian flyers in British squadrons during WWII. We also have the fleeting appearance in the movie of an Indian pilot. I suspect Cliff is representing a Canadian - though there were also a few US volunteers flying in the RAF in WWII (as late as 1944 and in a bomber I'm not so sure about - but its not totally impossible!) The real casting problem is George Chakiris. Very Greek/Italian and not at all Norwegian in appearance or accent! Also he lacks the screen presence or acting ability of Robertson. Considering his sister's looks I can only assume that there was a Greek milkman in that Norwegian town in the 1930s! Maria Perschy looks suitably Norwegian (and stunning) and doesn't try too hard for an accent otherwise than educated English - which considering she was Austrian may well have been a very good thing! Oh but the film has real flying scenes of Mosquitos and a flying score to match the Dambusters March so its a film worth watching. The lack of CGI is a huge bonus (though it does present us with some very dodgy models in action and the memory they destroyed a few real Mosquitos making the film). It also has one of the most stirring old-fashioned closing lines in film history delivered as only Harry Andrews could.

So I'd recommend watching it with critical facilities on 'mute' - enjoy what's there to be enjoyed and ignore the rest of it!!!
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Flawed classic with a brilliant score
hylinski10 December 2005
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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Rather cliched, but with definite high points.
KEVMC26 October 2003
In the spring of 1944 an RAF Mosquito Squadron are ordered to attack a German rocket fuel plant in Norway. The mission involves flying up a heavily defended fjord and bombing a cliff overhang in an attempt to bury the factory, which is built into the rock.

I bought this on DVD in a '3 for £20' offer, as I had fond memories of it from childhood, and it had been around 20 years since I last remember seeing it. I have to say that it's not nearly as good as I remembered it to be. The plot is full of cliches and there's the inevitable love interest for the lead. That said, there are points to recommend it. Cliff Robertson gives another reliable performance as the Wing Commander in charge of the squadron, and there are equally dependable turns from Harry Andrews and Donald Houston. The numerous flying sequences with the Mosquito Bombers are expertly filmed, and it's a real bonus to finally see the film in its correct 2.35:1 aspect ratio. The special effects aren't bad for 1964, and Ron Goodwin's famous score underpins the whole venture.

The main problem that I have with the film is that it borrows heavily from 'The Dam Busters' in terms of plot, without ever scaling the heights (no pun intended) of that classic. It may have lush Panavision photography, better effects etc., but lacks the nail biting tension and expertly constructed drama of its predecessor. However, it's perfectly acceptable entertainment, if somewhat abrupt at the end.
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Watch this one for the Mosquito's
Corfman5 August 2001
This film which begins with its blood pumping Ron Goodwin's musical score and the cloud opening sequences fire's it's beginning, then lets one down with it's almost 'World War II pulp comic book' screenplay.

However...watch this film for its remarkable footage of one very remarkable aircraft, the film's real stars.......the exciting, beautiful, fast, deHavilland Mosquito's. The dialogue is sometimes painful to recall, the story could have been better written, but the flying sequences recalls many real Mosquito W.W. II exploits as a pinpoint high speed strike aircraft, such as the real historical attack at rooftop height in France on the Gestapo headquarters freeing the many French Resistance prisoners standing out foremost. Why could the story not revolve around this real historical exploit, among many others?

Cliff Robertson's real life flying experience bleeds through somewhat, but we are wishing more. The romantic subplot?...fast forward the video through this. Also the kinky Gestapo woman interrogating Chakiris! Enjoy the Goodwin score, as the Mosquitos practice for there mission in the Scottish highlands, and the sound of those Merlin engines. Love those planes! '633 Squadron' is a keeper, but for aircraft buffs only really.

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A bit cheesy, but magnificent!
ericjg6235 October 2001
I saw this movie as an American kid growing up in England in the early 1970's. It absolutely captivated me, as it did my 9 year old English schoolmates. The musical score still resonates to this day, as do the magnificent scenes of those twin Merlin powered Mosquitos. As a movie, its got its share of flaws, but as a piece of aviation memorabilia, let it live forever! Along with "The Battle of Britain", this movie will captivate audiences for generations to come who will wonder what it was like when a few brave airmen stood between barbarism and civilization. The movie may have its cheesy moments (like many WW2 flicks) but the emotions were real. A lot of those guys never came back from their missions. This film, quite simply, shows both the glory and the sacrifice of war. The De Havilland Mosquito was a remarkable aircraft, and this movie really is a tribute to all the men who designed, built, and flew it in combat.
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Not the best special effects but a definite winner!
rocket-1526 January 1999
I remember 1964 quite well and "633 Squadron" was one of those highlights. I first saw "633" during its initial release. I was 8 years old at the time and infatuated with just about any plane that flew especially WWII aircraft. My dad, being in the Air Force's Strategic Air Command (SAC) at the time, knew that "633 Squadron" was for me.

Yes, I have read some comments on this movie about the use of less than realistic props (airplane models) but let's not forget this was shot back in the early 60's. I think it was done well for the special effects technology available at the time.

Just the sight of the actual Mosquito flying scenes (don't forget there weren't very many restored Mosquitos around to fly) did it for me not to mention the opening scene flying through the clouds as the opening score played on. It really gets my blood pumping to this day!

No, I haven't said a lot about the plot or the characters because the movie went beyond that for an 8 year old boy "flying" with the Squadron. Now at 42 I have re-lived those great memories by seeing this movie a second and third time. I recommend this movie for just about everyone.

Sometimes we must look thru the leaves to see the tree.
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A Dangerous Mission
bkoganbing6 October 2006
The Men of the 633 Squadron of the Royal Air Force have one nasty mission to perform. The Nazis have built a factory deep within a cliff with an overhang on a Norwegian fjord that is making a special fuel for rockets they're developing.

The RAF encountered a similar problem in The Guns of Navarone where an overhang protected two large pieces of artillery that was wreaking havoc on allied shipping. They gave up bombing there, but the Norwegian resistance brought in a geological consultant who says if they come in low and hit a certain spot with a fissure the whole thing will collapse and bury the factory under tons of rock.

The RAF mission, come in low and drop bombs enough to crack that fissure. It's a nasty mission for Cliff Robertson and his men even with aid from a ground attack planned by George Chakiris with the Norwegian resistance.

What's best about 633 Squadron are the special effects where they used vintage Mosquito fighter planes from World War II. It's really done quite well and is exciting.

As usual an American actor is brought in via the RAF Eagle Squadron for foreign pilots who enlisted before Pearl Harbor. In this case it's Cliff Robertson although he's a fine actor, isn't exactly box office. Maybe the producers thought he would be as he was just coming off playing John F. Kennedy in PT 109.

I'm also not quite sure why the Nazis would locate a fuel for rockets that were to be used in defending the western Europe beach from the invasion in Norway. Maybe they were listening on Winston Churchill who was constantly advocating a Norwegian invasion though American military and his own military told him that wasn't feasible. If it was for a cross channel invasion defense, that would have presented a transportation logistics problem for the Germans.

In any event it's nice war film with great special effects.
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Cliff Robertson's sleeve
danvers12 February 2005
633 Squadron was on TV this afternoon's, I haven't seen it for years. It is a passable WW2 flying movie. The best parts are the flying scenes with real Mosquitos, no CGI. The music is rousing but becomes tedious by the end. My comment is in reference to previous posters who complain about Cliff Robertson playing an RAF Wing Commander. If you look at his uniform sleeve you will observe a badge which only he wears. It contains an American eagle and signifies that he is an American volunteer in the British forces. Many American citizens volunteered to fight against the Nazis long before the American government belatedly came into the war.
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Star Wars?
tadhgk30 May 2002
While this is not the best film that has ever graced the cinema screen, it is useful to note that it is the basis of Star Wars. Much of the film's scenes were transplanted into the 1977 blockbuster, especially the famous death star trench sequence.
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Not too bad!
leonidas02118222 August 2001
I think the reason so many of the viewers have voted low is due to the lack of Americans saving the day in a mysterious twist of history once again! Personally I find the film quite good and the soundtrack is awesome!Unfortunately as I said before the majority of viewers are from the states so little praise would be given to a film where the Brits do something alone (as they actually did on many occasions!)
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Sensational pyrotechnics,exciting ending and rousing score are the main assets of this spectacular film
ma-cortes9 May 2007
This action-packed airplanes film deals about a Mosquito squadron is assigned to bomb an installation in Norway.The squadron commander(Clift Robertson) has a best friend(George Chakiris)and Resistance leader involved and he falls in love with his sister(Maria Perschy).Later ,he's assigned for bombing the stronghold where his friend is being held.The Air vice-Marshal(Harry Andrews) orders to leader along with his squadron(Michael Goodlife among others) on a mission into the fjords in search of V2 Nazi fuel plant is guarded by heavy anti-airplane defenses and is deemed bomb-proof.The Mosquito squadron to save England must to sacrifice everything they love and destroy vital points and gun positions in a dangerous and secret mission.This nearly impossibly mission is further complicated by the German guns, Nazi air raid and the impenetrable fortress.

It's a fictionalized account of the Mosquitos feats ,though based partially on real events.Well-served by a clever screenplay(James Clavell,Howard Koch)but the writers have also directly copied another classic war movie titled¨The dam busters¨ and takes part from ¨Operation Crossbow¨(Michael Anderson).The movie actually comes to life with the excellently realised and well-staged air battle scenes and ingenious flying machines.They have been made by maquette and scale model and someone is an authentic aircraft.Spectacular ,fantastic aerial photograph with an exciting bombing raid at the end and accompanied with a memorable score by Ron Goodwin.Colorful cinematography by cameraman Edward Scaife.Well done warlike film by experienced director Walter Grauman turns a good job,he's an usual television movies director.The film even got a spin off,titled ¨The Mosquito squadron¨(Boris Sagal)with David McCallum and with the majority of footage is lifted from this one, besides is known that inspired the ending ¨Star Wars¨.
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Great Movie
michaelsflynn23 April 2005
I read that Cliff Robertson became very enamouredred of flying during the movie and bought a Spitfire, not a Mosquito. He was a very active pilot. He also put a lot of effort into ensuring that pilots that flew for movies were recognized and (in the 1990s ?) made sure that when a movie pilot died "Hollywood" was represented at his funeral.

I doubt that he flew his own plane in the movie, but I do not actually know. At least post 1980 (the movie was released in 1964), the movie's insurers would probably not have approved of the star flying a plane, and the plane's insurer's would probably not have approved of an actor flying the plane.

I was a child when this movie was released; I loved it. I was already mad about flying, the movie reinforced that. I became a pilot. During my brief involvement in movies I met several people who had been crewmembers on "633 Squadron."
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A One Time Firm Favourite That Doesn't Hold Together When Viewed Today
Theo Robertson5 November 2005
I used to love this movie . When I was a child in the 1970s this movie would be shown at least once a year on television and I would always go out of my way to watch it and no matter how many times I saw it I would always enjoy it . It's an exciting war movie involving brave noble men in the RAF and Norwegian resistance giving those cruel Nazis what for . Jolly good show chaps

I hadn't seen this movie for years until today but was still interested in seeing it again and was slightly disappointed . Yes it might be exciting to a ten year old child in the 1970s but as an adult my critical faculties was instantly able to notice what's wrong with this movie

The screenplay feels rather disjointed as it jumps about from location to location and it almost feels like a storyboard rather than a completed script since the scenes seem to finish and start in an unnatural manner . This might actually be the fault of the editing rather than the screenplay because things might be spliced together in the wrong order . Take for example the scene where the airfield is attacked by the Germans ( The Luftwaffe could launch attacks on English airfields in 1944 ? Highly unlikely ) which then cuts to the bar later that day where everyone is drinking and singing and laughing and where no one refers to the attack . It's as if the previous scene had never happened and is undoubtedly a blunder by the film makers

It's by no means unique to this movie but another noticeable aspect when viewed today as an adult is how poor and dated the FX are . Cut to a Mosquito aircraft in mid flight then cut to the interior of the cockpit which is obviously a studio set with some painfully obvious back screen projection and of course there's the very obvious model aircraft which is a common flaw with airborne war movies from this period

All this makes a long cherished movie like 633 SQUADRON rather disappointing when viewed today but it's by no means a terrible movie . Ron Goodwin's score still remains impressive and some of the scenes were reworked into a little known film from 1977 called STAR WARS so it can't be all bad . If people are complaining that one of the Norwegians looks Greek then they must try getting out a bit more
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The music is a classic of movie music. It's the best part of this film
Major_Movie_Star10 May 2005
The music is a classic of the movie-music genre, and it is worthwhile just to hear it. It's the best thing about this film. Much of the special effects work (indeed, most of it) is not watchable in this day and age. A lot of the acting is quite wooden, to the point of being comical (have a good look at the faces of the aircrews just before disaster strikes!). However the part played by Robertson is instructive, as it displays to modern audiences a stolid type of leadership that may have had its place in the past, although modern audiences will not relate to it as well. The story itself is so cliché-ridden that it might have been written by a thirteen year-old. The basic premise of the story--that the Nazis needed fuel produced in Norway in order to fuel (yes; fuel) their new rocket weapons--is just too absurd; a flabby, semi-literate adaptation/transmogrification of the true story behind the film "Heroes of Telemark".
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Well worth seeing
ricky-2814 February 1999
Thank goodness for Steve. Dave do not expect to have perfect endings every time. The flying scenes were very well done indeed and having flown a few hours in the "wooden wonder" I appreciated the film from the very first time I saw it. I must have seen it 10 or more times and it still gets my blood racing. By the way a lot of "Mossies" that were destroyed in the filming, to try and get some accuracy is the most wasteful cause of the lack of airframes to restore today.
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Mossie's last hurrah
cmark5118 December 2003
I was really excited as a 13-year-old air cadet-to-be when this movie came out - I even got my mom to take to me to it (OK, so I led a sheltered life). I watched it for the planes A friend my parents had been a Mosquito pilot and had told some great war stories, so I already knew about what a great plane it was. Many Mosquitoes were built in Canada by DeHavilland during the war. One of my airplane magazines (Air Classics) did a photo story on how the producers had scratched together the planes for 633 Squadron - apparently they found 8 or so around the world, one, I believe mouldering away in Mexico or Central America. It looks like they only got two or three actually airworthy for the shoot - and I suspect the un-airworthy ones were used for the fiery crash scenes. Seen again recently, the movie has high production values, reasonable technical authenticity (except for that Land Rover hiding in the shrubs in one shot) but is encumbered by the all the Hollywood tripe. And, while I can excuse Me-108s playing 109s, the model work is indeed pretty crappy most of the time. The real pleasure of the movie is the precious few shots of the real Mosquitoes in action, which makes the rest of the nonsense tolerable. Why they couldnt have done a real Mossie story - such as the real precision

breaching of a Gestapo prison wall - I don't know.
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Great movie...Great music
rxist10 February 2002
The music catches you right from the start...a great score by Goodwin. The intense action keeps you on the edge of your seat...and along with the back ground music your attention never strays...not even go for a drink and popcorn. I love this flick. Best Regards, rxist
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Watch it for the planes and the music
jsa13074 October 2000
This is not the Bridge on the River Kwai, but the air footage of the Mosquitos-DeHavilland's "Wooden Wonders"-and Mr. Goodwin's soaring score makes it worth a look. Goodwin also did the scoring for "Battle of Britain" and 'Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines" as well as "Where Eagles Dare" and several other adventure genre films.
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Takes me back to WGN's 10 O'Clock Movie
Falco-81 April 1999
This was always a treat to watch when I was growing up. Back then the stiff, shallow characters and often laughably bad special effects didn't matter that much. It was just great to see those lovely Mosquitos take part in some delightfully cartoonish action.

I've aged and so has the movie and I'm not sure which one has aged worse. The live action footage of the Mossy's and Ron Goodwins stirring score are still memorable. However, the plot develops with all the energy of a bowl of Gazpacho, saddled with a starchy love story subplot and thoroughly dull performances all around. Nevertheless, the final attack sequence is still moderately thrilling {and oddly forshadows the trench run scene in "Star Wars"} and with a little fast forwading now and then, can be an enjoyable romp.
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One of the best musical scores of all time.
rxist6 February 2002
This movie has one of the best musical scores of all time. The music alone is worth watching this flick. I like this WW II flick and would recommend it to anyone who likes war movies...I still can't say enough about the music...just great!
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A rousing theme but weak on subtlety and plot
shakercoola26 May 2018
633 Squadron imbues the indomitable spirit and bravery of the airman during World War II but the dialogue is banal and the characters are opaque. As a result it is a mile wide wide in stature and vista with all the aerial action but only an inch thick on narrative. It's also made awkward for having an American as the hero. The bombastic musical theme is obviously very memorable for this subgenre, but it is played so many times to convey the airborne sequences it doesn't always fit. The de Havilland DH.98 Mosquito airplanes are the stars of the film, and even if the effects are dated they are interesting for capturing the aircraft in flight. It is worth pointing out here that the real 617 RAF squadron which carried out similar missions on which the story is based were actually Avro Lancaster bombers.
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Boys' Own Style Flying Movie with Classic Theme Music
thecutlers21 March 2016
Warning: Spoilers
I used to love watching this movie when I was a kid. It is real Boys' Own stuff, just like those British booklet-sized war comics that Baby Boomers loved to read as boys. That's why it may not stand up well to audiences today: stereotypical stiff-upper-lipped characters not to mention pretty basic special effects. As other reviewers have said, it takes a few historical liberties. It doesn't pretend to be a docudrama like Dambusters. Despite all that, it's still good enough to keep you awake on a rainy Sunday afternoon. I don't think it deserves the really poor reviews given by some contributors and aviation purists.

I was crazy about flying way back when, and the sight of all those magnificent de Haviland Mosquitoes flying flat out in formation at tree top level dodging fjords etc was quite thrilling. The theme music was very exciting too, and still is. When I hear it, I still see those Mosquitoes roaring along. It's so evocative, full of movement and aerial daring-do. It remains a classic movie theme, just like the ones from The Magnificent Seven or A Big Country. Maybe a case of a movie theme that is much more memorable than the movie it was written for. At the very least, check it out on Youtube.

The lead actors do an uninspired but workmanlike job though the young "Norwegian" pilot looks about as Scandinavian as Victor Mature. He was more convincing as a Greek member of Gregory Peck's raiding party in The Guns of Navarone. If you're looking for deep characterization and Shakespearean insights, you'll be disappointed. And being made for the American market too, there's the obligatory romantic complication shoehorned into the plot.

The only really silly thing about the movie is the ending. Air Vice Marshal Davis, played by Harry Andrews, waits for 633 Squadron to return from its near suicidal mission. Waiting in his staff car at the airfield, one of his underlings announces the terrible truth, that the entire squadron has been shot down with all crews probably dead. (Incidentally, did this EVER happen to an RAF squadron anywhere?) He pontificates with, "You can't kill a squadron." The viewer is tempted to shout, "Well, they bloody well have!" Then he is chauffeured off, with exaggerated gravitas, presumably to attend a "please explain" meeting with his superiors that may end in early forced retirement. Or maybe he's wondering where the dickens he's going to find twelve new Mosquitoes and crews. Don't you know there's a war on, Air Vice Marshal!

If you've never seen this movie and you feel like a bit of uncomplicated, old-fashioned entertainment with some thrilling aerial photography and great theme music, you won't be disappointed. Just don't expect a winged Lukas or Spielberg production.
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Two Big Attractions
JamesHitchcock11 December 2014
Warning: Spoilers
"633 Squadron" has much in common with "The Dambusters" from around a decade earlier. Both films depict the exploits of a British bomber squadron during the Second World War. Both have as their climax a spectacular raid on a vital German target. In both cases the British airmen succeed in their objectives, but only at the cost of heavy losses. The main difference between the two films, however, apart from the fact that one is in black- and-white and the other in colour, is that whereas "The Dambusters" dramatises an actual wartime raid, the story told here is purely fictional; there never was a 633 Squadron in the wartime Royal Air Force and the events depicted never took place.

The story is set in 1944. The RAF is informed by the Norwegian resistance that the factory producing fuel for the German V-2 rockets is located at the head of a Norwegian fjord. The factory itself is believed to be bombproof as it is protected by an overhanging cliff, but geologists have calculated that several bombs dropped in the right spot could cause the cliff itself to collapse on the factory. Because the fjord is long, narrow and winding, the only aircraft suitable for the job is the fast and manoeuvrable De Havilland Mosquito.

The task of destroying the factory is assigned to 633 Squadron. Like most wartime fighting units (at least in films), this one is composed of men from all parts of Britain and the Empire, including Australia and India. In the original novel on which the film was based the Squadron's commander, Roy Grant, was British, but here he becomes an American. The real reason for this, of course, was to provide a role for a Hollywood star (Cliff Robertson, himself a keen flyer), but it is not historically inaccurate. A number of American aviators, the "Eagle Squadron", had volunteered to serve in the RAF before America's entry into the war, and here Grant is one of these men.

"633 Squadron" is not really in the same class as "The Dambusters", largely because the acting is not of the same quality. The Greek- American George Chakiris, in particular, seems miscast as the Norwegian resistance fighter Erik Bergman. The film, however, does have two big attractions which helped to establish it as a favourite with the British public. The first is Ron Goodwin's famously stirring musical score which at one time almost rivalled Eric Coates's "Dambusters March" in popularity. The second is the final scene (said to have inspired the "trench run" sequence in "Star Wars") in which the Squadron fly up the fjord to attack the factory, running the gauntlet of the German anti- aircraft batteries- a thrilling sequence which has made the film beloved of all aviation enthusiasts and is the main attraction when it is shown on television today. 7/10
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