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Battle of the Bulge - 1965 film Login/Join 
Peace through
superior firepower
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posted
What a strange film. If you read the reviews of it on IMDB, you'll get the idea. I love the comment about this film being the Plan 9 from Outer Space of war films.

Horribly innacurate, to the point of being an insult to those who fought in WWII. Being made only twenty years after the end of the war, there were plenty fo veterans in the audience when this thing was in theaters and, apparently, they howled about it.

"President Eisenhower described this ridiculously filmed garbage as obscene upon seeing it upon first release."

When Eisenhower shits on your war film, you done fucked up, A-Aron.

My primary beef with the film, though, is the location shooting. As one reviewer put it: "Ah yes! The scorched plains of the Belgian desert..."

Filming location? Sierra de Guadarrama mountain range, Madrid, Spain

Have you seen this abomination? They have tanks rolling through scrub brush and sand! There are sand-covered hills in some scenes. What the everloving fuck?? Every last person involved with this film remembered WWII. There is no excuse for what they did. Spain is not Belgium! The first time I saw this film was in the 1970s and when I saw the tank scenes in the desert, I said "That does not compute."

Oh, and how could I forget- sunny skies! Good grief, the Americans had no air cover during the Battle of the Bulge because...why? Because of the solid overcast weather! So bad. So very, very bad.

"Good movie, if you ignore the title" said one reviewer, and I guess that's true. Taken as just a generic war film, it's entertaining to watch, but, damn! Roll Eyes


A dead ringer for the Ardennes, wouldn't you say?

 
Posts: 93953 | Registered: January 20, 2000Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I have seen it. Pretty solid until the barrels of gas were rolled down a cliff into the desert.

Mmmmm???? I don't remember that in the history books...


"It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye". The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupery, pilot and author, lost on mission, July 1944, Med Theatre.
 
Posts: 5516 | Location: Central Texas | Registered: September 14, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Official Space Nerd
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I enjoyed it when I was a teen. Today, not so much.

Some people get their panties in a wad that war films (such as Patton) didn't use REAL Panzer and Tiger tanks or American Shermans. Well, considering this was WAY before CGI and there might be a dozen such German tanks in museums world-wide (and even fewer in running condition, and even FEWER that a movie studio could have borrowed), I don't mind (just like I did not mind US-built T-38 jets substituting for Soviet "MiG-28" fighters in Top Gun).

But, the things they COULD control were lame. It is surprising that such a star-studded cast signed on to this turd (Henry Fonda, Robert Shaw, George Montgomery, Charles Bronson, and (don't forget) Telly Savalas). . .

On the plus side, I do enjoy the Panzer Song:


I also liked the crusty old German NCO who just wanted to go home and raise his son(s?) in peace.



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Posts: 21278 | Location: Hobbiton, The Shire, Middle Earth | Registered: September 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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It was remarkably snow free, too.


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Posts: 12168 | Location: Marquette MI | Registered: July 08, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I started to watch it a year or two ago, but I couldn’t get through it. I know there aren’t enough Panther and Tiger tanks around, but other films have done a credible job of disguising available tanks to look German. No attempt here at all, slap black crosses on Patton tanks—good to go.

I’ve got nothing against Robert Shaw, but I thought he was awful as the Panzer Division commander.

Location, historical inaccuracy, and some bad acting; other than that, it was ok.


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Posts: 10695 | Location: Wyoming | Registered: January 10, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Don't Panic
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As a young kid, I saw this film when it first came out, knowing nothing about WWII. With all its warts (none of which I was aware of at the time) this movie got that young kid to go pick up John Toland's book "Battle - The Story of The Bulge". The two of them together - the movie and that book - started a military history hobby/obsession which continues with me to this day.

But, yeah, now, with about 50 years and hundreds of books on WWII behind me...I kinda cringe when it's on, looking at the tanks, the terrain and the weather depicted. That said, I do kinda like the singing of the Panzerlied, though (AFAIK, that is actually authentic as to lyrics) and the development of James McArthur's character as the story progresses.
 
Posts: 13932 | Location: North Carolina | Registered: October 15, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Help! Help!
I'm being repressed!

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I prefer Battleground.

You had a good home but you left!

You're right!
 
Posts: 10563 | Location: Big Sky Country | Registered: November 20, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I watch it and enjoy it for what it is.....entertainment value. HOWEVER...I'm SORELY disappointed the studio would allow the title to remain when this movie CLEARLY and UNEQUIVOCALLY has absolutely NOTHING to do with The Battle of the Bulge. They should have given it some generic title more fitting with what actually happened in the movie.

Yes...from a purely historic perspective, the movie as titled is JUNK and is an epic disservice to the men that fought and died in that battle.



"If you’re a leader, you lead the way. Not just on the easy ones; you take the tough ones too…” – MAJ Richard D. Winters (1918-2011), E Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne

"Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil... Therefore, as tongues of fire lick up straw and as dry grass sinks down in the flames, so their roots will decay and their flowers blow away like dust; for they have rejected the law of the Lord Almighty and spurned the word of the Holy One of Israel." - Isaiah 5:20,24
 
Posts: 8120 | Location: NW Houston | Registered: April 04, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I enjoy Battle of the Bulge, for whatever its weaknesses may be, same as with Battleground, for its ability to tell the story.

I'll throw one more out there - "Hell is for Heroes" starring Steve McQueen. Might not be 100% accurate, but I appreciate how it portrays the personal struggles of soldiers.
 
Posts: 420 | Location: DFW, TX | Registered: September 25, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
goodheart
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Absurd scenery for sure, and I did like the Panzerlied. Robert Shaw was always great portraying a Nazi or a Soviet goon as he did in From Russia With Love.


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Posts: 16656 | Location: One hop from Paradise | Registered: July 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Just because you can,
doesn't mean you should
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I don't remember watching the movie but do remember that train scene ending.
Movies have come a long way since that was made and several have really tried for historical accuracy.
Since they made Saving Private Ryan, Band of Brothers, and The Pacific, it's hard to measure up to that standard in these older films. The Longest Day was pretty good in that regard, considering the available technology.


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Posts: 7002 | Location: NE GA | Registered: August 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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^^^^^^
[slight drift...]

I'd like to see current cinematic technology invested in a film about the American Revolution. Research a famous unit from the period and do a multi-part series ala Band of Brothers or The Pacific. Turn: Washington's Spies (produced by AMC) did a pretty good job, though there was a bit of theatrical license taken...

[/drift]



"If you’re a leader, you lead the way. Not just on the easy ones; you take the tough ones too…” – MAJ Richard D. Winters (1918-2011), E Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne

"Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil... Therefore, as tongues of fire lick up straw and as dry grass sinks down in the flames, so their roots will decay and their flowers blow away like dust; for they have rejected the law of the Lord Almighty and spurned the word of the Holy One of Israel." - Isaiah 5:20,24
 
Posts: 8120 | Location: NW Houston | Registered: April 04, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Speaking of cinematic technology, I was impressed how the 1966 classic “Is Paris Burning?” (The week in Paris before the allies arrived in 1944) incorporated actual footage from the war into the film. I wasn’t expecting it, but was pleasantly surprised they found a way back then to try and make a film more realistic. Since the film was produced in black and white, it didn’t look entirely out of place.
 
Posts: 420 | Location: DFW, TX | Registered: September 25, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Live long
and prosper
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Paris brûle-t-il? (1966) was and is still an awesome war movie.

When I was a kid, the Bastogne battle movie was ok.
Didn't know any better.
When I moved to Belgium and visited the area and experienced their winters the whole thing fell to pieces and overnight became silly stupid.
Yet, in those days, movie fist fights usually ended when one guy hit the dirt. Nowadays he gets kicked on the ground until he spits his nuts...

Time changes.

0-0


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Posts: 11281 | Location: BsAs, Argentina | Registered: February 14, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Haven't seen the movie so no comment on it other than it sounds very poorly produced and directed.

As an aside, I had the very great honor of serving in both the 4th Armored Division and the 101st Airborne - the two divisions most closely associated with the Battle of the Bulge. My service was in the late 1960's and early 70's. I was a very junior 2nd Lt. then 1st Lt. in Germany with thee 4th and a very junior Captain in RVN with the 101st. It's an unusual combination to have been in both an armored division and an infantry division in so short a time. As an Armor officer, I was assigned the the 101st in RVN as there was almost no heavy armor in use there. When I first got to RVN, I told them that tanks didn't do well dropping out of planes or helicopters but they just laughed.

In any case, both units were very proud of their heritage and I considered it a real privilege to have serve in both, especially considering their common history!


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Posts: 1947 | Location: Southern California | Registered: January 16, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The scene with Shaw and his aide where Shaw wants the war to go on forever and his aide just wants to see his sons.
 
Posts: 3580 | Location: North Carolina | Registered: August 16, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Read a article many years ago about a veteran of the B of the Bulge. His wife said in the winter time he would get in bed at night and sometimes he’d shiver for a while and then say, “well,at least I’m not in Bastogne.”
 
Posts: 4349 | Registered: November 30, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Legalize the Constitution
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quote:
Originally posted by satch:
Read a article many years ago about a veteran of the B of the Bulge. His wife said in the winter time he would get in bed at night and sometimes he’d shiver for a while and then say, “well,at least I’m not in Bastogne.”

That’s actually a quote from one of the veterans of Easy Company from Band of Brothers.


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Can’t never did,
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Posts: 10695 | Location: Wyoming | Registered: January 10, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Its been long time since I saw the movie. As a kid it was exciting but I do remember some bad acting.
"Stay loose" comes to mind.
I also did not like the quality of the film or the type of film they used.

So can a 55 gal drum of gas defeat a Tiger 2 tank?
A question for myth busters!



Let all Men know thee, but no man know thee thoroughly: Men freely ford that see the shallows.
Benjamin Franklin
 
Posts: 3478 | Location: Sparta, NJ USA | Registered: August 16, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
goodheart
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quote:
Paris brûle-t-il? (1966) was and is still an awesome war movie.


I saw this in Dakar, Senegal in 1967. Since I had studied in Germany 1965-66 this was the first movie with spoken French and German in which I didn't need subtitles. And yes, it's a great movie; Gert Fröbe (of Goldfinger fame) was excellent as von Choltitz.


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“We seem to be getting closer and closer to a situation where nobody is responsible for what they did but we are all responsible for what somebody else did.”--Thomas Sowell
 
Posts: 16656 | Location: One hop from Paradise | Registered: July 27, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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