Patton will lead the assault. I would prefer Montgomery, but even Eisenhower isn’t that stupid.
This movie serves as both an unofficial sequel and thematic bookend to The Longest Day. It has an undeserved reputation for being overlong, ponderous and dull. It’s none of those things but I can understand how it could appear that way to people expecting a more conventional war movie.
Stanley Kramer’s second courtroom drama starring Spencer Tracy in as many years is mostly an actor’s tour de force, but surprisingly not for the film’s nominal stars, Tracy and Burt Lancaster. Both of these veterans step back and let a handful of others take center screen. The talent pool is so deep in this film that the fifth-billed actor, Maximilian Schell, took home a Best Actor Oscar, the deepest that award has gone into a film’s “bench.”
The scale and depth of savagery that typified the Eastern Front of World War II made the Anglo-American experience on the Western Front seem like a summer tea-party. I don’t know if any film could capture the entirety of the experience and do it justice.
Sam Peckinpah’s only war movie instead attempts to portray the hardened fatalism of the veteran German soldiers after the tide of war had irrevocably turned against them.