6.6/10
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Victory (1981)

PG | | Drama, Sport, War | 31 July 1981 (USA)
As allied POWs prepare for a soccer game against the German National Team to be played in Nazi-occupied Paris, the French Resistance and British officers are making plans for the team's escape.

Director:

John Huston

Writers:

Yabo Yablonsky (story), Djordje Milicevic (story) | 3 more credits »

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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sylvester Stallone ... Captain Robert Hatch - The Players: U.S.A.
Michael Caine ... Capt. John Colby - The Players: England
Pelé ... Cpl. Luis Fernandez - Allied Soccer Player - The Players: Brazil
Bobby Moore ... Terry Brady - Allied Soccer Player - The Players: England
Osvaldo Ardiles ... Carlos Rey - Allied Soccer Player - The Players: Argentina
Paul Van Himst Paul Van Himst ... Michel Fileu - The Players: Belgium
Kazimierz Deyna ... Paul Wolchek - The Players: Poland
Hallvar Thoresen Hallvar Thoresen ... Gunnar Hilsson - The Players: Norway
Mike Summerbee Mike Summerbee ... Sid Harmor - Allied Soccer Player - The Players: England
Co Prins Co Prins ... Pieter Van Beck - The Players: Holland
Russell Osman Russell Osman ... Doug Clure - The Players: England
John Wark John Wark ... Arthur Hayes - The Players: Scotland
Søren Lindsted Søren Lindsted ... Erik Ball - Allied Soccer Player - The Players: Denmark (as Soren Linsted)
Kevin O'Callaghan Kevin O'Callaghan ... Tony Lewis - Allied Goalkeeper - The Players: Ireland (as Kevin O'Calloghan)
Max von Sydow ... Major Karl Von Steiner - The Germans (as Max Von Sydow)
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Storyline

In World War II, a group of Nazi officers come up with a propaganda event in which an all star Nazi team will play a team composed of Allied Prisoners of War in a Soccer (Football) game. The Prisoners agree, planning on using the game as a means of escape from the camp. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Their goal was freedom... See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sport | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA | Italy

Language:

English

Release Date:

31 July 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Escape to Victory See more »

Filming Locations:

Hungary See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,488,808, 31 July 1981, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$10,853,418

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$27,453,418, 31 December 1981
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Shot over a period of five weeks. See more »

Goofs

The microphone used by the radio announcer at the soccer match is an RCA model 77B, a model not introduced until the late-1940s. See more »

Quotes

Capt. John Colby - The Players: England: What's the verdict on Williams?
Major Karl Von Steiner - The Germans: A regrettable mistake.
Capt. John Colby - The Players: England: The whole bloody war's a regrettable mistake.
Major Karl Von Steiner - The Germans: I agree.
See more »

Alternate Versions

CBS edited 20 minutes from this film for its 1983 network television premiere. See more »

Connections

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

Soundtracks

Symphony 5, 4th movement
(uncredited)
Written by Dmitri Shostakovich
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
"Take me out from the ball game"
1 September 2006 | by benbrae76See all my reviews

The script of this unusual war/escape movie was nothing special, and neither was the acting. Not surprising about the latter since half the performers weren't actually experienced actors. However I loved every minute of it, and thought it was great fun and terrific entertainment. Of course there are those who won't quite see it that way and will dismiss it out of hand. And they'd be perfectly sane to do so. Everything about "Victory" (aka "Escape to Victory" in the UK) says it's one to leave well alone.

Even if you disregard the lack of aesthetic qualities, and tut-tut over the reality of it all, it's worth watching if only to see again a few of the great past-masters of what the Brits like to call "the beautiful game" (i.e. soccer). And Sylvester Stallone as a goalkeeper is something to behold.

As far as escape stories go this is about as original as they get, but even here it's possible to see plundering from other story lines, i.e "The Great Escape", "The Password is Courage", "Albert RN", to name but three, and as at least one reviewer has pointed out, the music is extremely reminiscent of the first one.

One of my favourites snippets is that of the Nazi sports commentator, portrayed by Anton Diffring, that stalwart of war movies, broadcasting his gramophone record of enthusiastic crowd applause, when in "reality" the whole stadium was as quiet as the grave.

I think this is one of those rare occasions, if taken in the right vein, when a bad movie can be a crowd pleaser. Forget the war pundits, the realists and the purists. Just enjoy the movie for what it is. Tremendous fun!


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