The infamous attack on Israeli athletes and coaches in the Olympic Village during the 1972 Munich Olympics is chronicled in this made-for-television movie and supplemented with archive footage from the actual games. Members of the Palestinian Black September Movement kill two and hold nine others as hostages to exchange for hundreds of Arab prisoners in Israeli jails. The Israeli government adheres to its policy of not negotiating with terrorists, and German Holocaust guilt will not permit West German officials to allow the terrorists to leave the country with the hostages. Therefore, it falls to Chief of Police Manfred Schreiber to delay fulfilling the Palestinian demands through on-going negotiation, but sooner or later he knows that tough decisions will have to be made.Written by
I was 16 when the Israeli massacre occurred in Munich 33 yrs ago today and this made for TV film is an excellent feature about those events. Made in 76' the film holds up very well. The film does not "hollywoodize" the events in Munich in any way. It tells the story about what happened in 72' in a very straightforward manner. William Holden, nearing the end of his career, is surprisingly good as the Police Chief of Munich. Franco Nero at first seems like a stretch to play an Arab terrorist but he is very good in this picture. The film also shows how the other Olympic activities kept going on while the hostage crises unfolded which now seems impossible to imagine. The bravery of the Israeli athletes, the confusion and ineptitude of the German police, the dbl-speak of the politicians, nothing is overlooked in this movie. If this movie was based on fictional events it would be a very fine film. The fact that the tragic events depicted actually occurred, and that the film so honorably and sensitively captures what happened in Munich means this film is worthy of the highest praise in my view.
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