In the midst of World War II, the battle below the seas rages. The Nazis have the upper edge as the Allies are unable to crack their war codes. That is, until a wrecked U-boat sends out an SOS signal, and the Allies realize this is their chance to seize the 'enigma coding machine'. But masquerading as Nazis and taking over the U-boat is the smallest of their problems. The action really begins when they get stranded on the U-boat.Written by
The Enigma machine used in the movie was genuine and not a prop. It was obtained from a collector for use in the movie. See more »
At the beginning of the movie when the U-571 is under depth charge attack from the British destroyer, the order is given to surface the sub due to damage. When they surface, the Captain reports "All clear!" and orders lookouts to the bridge. What happened to the British destroyer that was just attacking them? It should have still been nearby and would have seen them surface. See more »
At least one version of the theatrical release contained no subtitles for the opening scene aboard the German submarine. This was possibly to increase dramatic effect, placing emphasis on the acting and visuals rather than the dialogue. See more »
I rented U-571 thinking that a movie with submarines and Harvey Keitel in it would at least be vaguely entertaining, but boy, was I wrong. As for its mindless entertainment value, if you have only ever seen one u - boat movie you will essentially have seen U-571 because it goes to great pains not to miss any cliché in the book; the first third in particular is an almost exact copy of "Das Boot".
What really angers me about U-571 though, apart from it being a really bad movie, is the premeditated way it tries to remanufacture history. Without going into details: the actual Enigma machine was relatively well known, the difficult bit was cracking the code -- which was brilliantly accomplished by the British (after some spadework from the Poles). Next there is the cheap attempt to whitewash racial segregation in the US by throwing in a black sailor and then putting the onus on the Germans by showing a German sailor being shocked at seeing a black person -- maybe it was the historical inaccuracy he was astounded by. Even worse, the film promotes an almost fascist type of ideology, namely the leader principle, mindless submission to authority, the objective must be achieved regardless of the cost of human life (enemy or comrade). So ironically, U-571, with reversed sides and minus the special effects, could pass for a German propaganda movie of that era.
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