Operation Market Garden, September 1944: The Allies attempt to capture several strategically important bridges in the Netherlands in the hope of breaking the German lines. However, mismanagement and poor planning result in its failure.
1943, The war is entering its final stages and Germany is teetering on the brink of defeat. An increasingly unhinged Hitler, orders a mission to have British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill kidnapped and brought to Germany. The plan seems ludicrous in the extreme, but a message sent from a German spy in the Norfolk countryside makes one German officer realize that such a mission may just feasible.Written by
In a 1976 interview with Photoplay Film Magazine, Sir Michael Caine (Kurt Steiner) claimed that his main reason for accepting this role was that he had turned down Where Eagles Dare (1968) and did not want to turn down another World War II film with "Eagle" in its title. See more »
There is a scene when one of the invading soldiers sits down to play a church's pipe organ. His hands are shown on the keys and it is blatantly obvious that he is not playing the technically challenging music that we hear. See more »
[WWII News Story]
September 12, 1943, German paratroopers snatched Mussolini from his mountaintop prison in Italy.
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The UK video version of this movie (once available on Channel 5/Spectrum sell thru) is missing roughly 12 minutes of footage. This material can be found in the version screened by the BBC, although the 'beeb' decided to censor two brief scenes of violence (after Grey shoots Pitts, there's a quick shot of blood covering his face and a U.S. soldier having his shoulder shot while a colleague pronounces "son of a bitch"; both of these are in the shorter video version). The following omissions occur in the video:
Radl and Karl walking to map room, putting map on wall (this follows Radl saying "where is Studley Barnett")
Liam walking into churchyard, then church, meeting Father Vereker and Pamela (following the pub scene)
Long, important dialogue scene with Liam, Grey and Steiner discussing their motives (following the manouvres scene)
Pitts telling his men to "put that windshield down, and give me some hand grenades" (following the war office disagreement)
Pitts looking through binoculars, putting white flag on jeep and negotiating with a nazi, whilst his men get into position (after Clark stops Churchill)
Brief shot of nazi playing theme music on church organ
Brief shot of above nazi, dead slumped over organ
Radl and Karl outside in Alderney (after Steiner and Devlin depart)
Two U.S. soldiers send dogs into a hut after Devlin, then Devlin using his dog whistle trick (after Steiner knocks soldier unconscious).
Not the best example of WW II/action-movie making but it has some great moments.
The concept of the movie is both great and original but however the execution of it is not exactly done in the best way possible.
The movie starts of very slow and even perhaps a bit boring. Thankfuly the second halve of the movie is much better once the action and story really start and take more pace and form. It might not be as entertaining and good as other WW II/action movies, meant as entertainment, such as "Where Eagles Dare", "Kelly's Heroes" and "The Guns of Navarone" but it does have some great moments in it which still helps to make "The Eagle Has Landed" a bit of a must see for the fans of the genre.
The story is just great and its interesting to see a movie for once from the perspective of the German side. For once the Germans are not portrayed as ruthless villains but as soldiers with valor and courage instead. The movie is perhaps a bit moralistic in the first halve of the movie (basicly every German soldier shown in the movie openly hates Hitler and is against the deportation of Jews to the concentration camps. It feels too forced all) but nevertheless the perspective the movie is told from is great and works good for the movie. It's too bad that the movie is told needlessly slow at times, while it could had been a great fast paced action-movie.
The movie has a great cast but this is not really an actors movie, meaning that the movie wouldn't had been any better or worse with some other lesser known names in it. It was weird to hear Donald Sutherland talking in an Irish accent and Robert Duvall with a German one. Also Treat Williams in one of his first movie roles was horrible as the American soldier Capt. Clark. On the other hand, it was great to see Donald Pleasance as Heinrich Himmler. Other big names in this movie are Michael Caine, Anthony Quayle and Jean Marsh.
The action sequences are good and definitely the best part of the movie. The movie is somewhat entertaining to watch and it does have some well placed humor at times but its not quite enough to truly uplift this movie to a level of greatness.
This last movie from director John Sturges is a memorable but not perfect one.
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