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When Trumpets Fade (1998)

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A private in the latter days of WWII on the German front struggles between his will to survive and what his superiors perceive as a battlefield instinct.

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1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Frank-Michael Köbe ...
German Sergeant (as Frank Köbe)
András Stohl ...
Wounded Soldier
Matthew Rutson Cooney ...
Driver Corporal (as Matthew Ruston Cooney)
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Storyline

In WWII Western Germany, Private David Manning reluctantly leaves behind a mortally wounded fellow soldier and searches for survivors from his platoon, only to learn from commanding officer Captain Pritchett that they have all been killed in action. Despite requesting a discharge on the grounds of mental disability, Manning is promoted to sergeant and assigned to lead a new platoon of young inductees. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In the heat of battle not all soldiers can be heroes

Genres:

Action | Drama | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for graphic war carnage and strong language | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

27 June 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hurtgen  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs

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Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The red keystone unit patch signifies that Manning and the others are part of the The 28th Infantry Division. The 28th is a unit of the Army National Guard and is the oldest division-sized unit in the armed forces of the United States. See more »

Goofs

The Dragons teeth of the Siegfried line are not shown as they really were (and in numerous places still are today). 1) In the movie the line is built with four rows of teeth. In reality the line is built with five rows. 2) The teeth are in reality not made in one size as shown in the movie, but in 3 different sizes, where the first and last rows contain the biggest pillars, the middle three are middle sized, and woven in the last row you can find the smallest. 3) The rows are not placed exactly behind each other. If you would see them from above, you would see an angle in the middle. 4) The rows of pillars are also not built in one line. If you would look over a row from the side, you would see a zigzag of pillars. 5) The pillars in the movie are too close to each other. In reality, the area between two pillars is so big, you can park a car between them (as is done by the author of this comment on numerous occasions). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator, news footage: August 1944. The outcome of the Second World War appeared to be no longer in doubt. Paris was liberated. After four years of fighting, victory against the Germans seemed assured. Since the Normandy landings, American and Allied forces had battled their way across northern Europe, and pushed the German enemy to within its own homeland.
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Connections

Referenced in Ban the Sadist Videos! (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Over There
Written by George M. Cohan
Performed by Elysian Singers
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User Reviews

 
Realistic & metaphorical at once
6 February 2000 | by See all my reviews

While people keep calling this film realistic (and it probably is), I saw this film at a time when I couldn't deny its relevance to events in my own work life. More than the futility of _just_ war, it speaks to a mentality that allows a system to dictate what must be accomplished by the people under its thumb, without regard to whether it's possible or how many people it will destroy to accomplish that thing. Almost more than other war movies, it reminds me of Rod Serling's _Patterns_ (another fine movie that never made it off the small screen).

And it's also a great exploration of that dark, strange area where what's selfish in the moment can turn heroic in hindsight. I think the writer may have actually _read_ Audie Murphy's _To Hell and Back_, which dwells in some of the same strange and gritty territory.

As someone else said, it's not perfect -- but up-&-comers Orth & Eldard turn in great performances, and there's none of the usual Spielbergian sentimentality in evidence. See it, but don't expect to be uplifted.


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