War Movie Miscellany

May 2011
545
New Iberia, La.
#81
QUOTE - “Mandrake, do you recall what Clemenceau once said about war? … He said war was too important to be left to the generals. When he said that, 50 years ago, he might have been right. But today, war is too important to be left to politicians. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought. I can no longer sit back and allow Communist infiltration, Communist indoctrination, Communist subversion and the international Communist conspiracy to sap and impurify all of our precious bodily fluids.” — Gen. Jack D. Ripper, “Dr. Strangelove” (1964)
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Likes: Ancientgeezer
Nov 2011
8,865
The Dustbin, formerly, Garden of England
#84
I am a few days late on this, but I don't spend as much time on Historum since it was invaded by so many Charlie Hunts.

RE Post #74
D-DAY--THE LONGEST DAY---been on TV at least three times this week.
I posted this here a couple of years ago-- The British actor Richard Todd (who was also in D-DAY--6th June with Robert Taylor) was actually a 24 year old Captain in the parachute regiment (6th Airborne) who parachuted into Normandy midnight on D-Day, his unit supported the capture of the vital Pegasus Bridge where he met Maj. John Howard who led the desperate eight-hour firefight against German counter-attacks. In the movie Todd played the role of Howard and another actor played the part of the, much younger, Todd.
This raises the (for me) irritation of vain middle aged actors playing the parts of men 10-20 years younger than they are.
I posted this four years ago
They seemed to have a lot of ageing Male leads in the 1960s--I watched "The Longest Day" a few weeks ago and while it was very much a "cameo" film the casting was a bit of a pensioners plan. Robert Ryan (age 53) playing General Gavin (age 37) giving orders to John Wayne (age 56) playing Colonel Vandervoort (age 27), Red Buttons (age 48) playing a buck private paratooper.
Richard Todd (age 44) who was actually part of the unit that captured Pegasus Bridge did not play his 21 year old self, but his commanding officer who was 34.

This was not lost on David Attenborough and William Goldman who cast Ryan O'Neal (age 38) as General Gavin and MIchael Caine (43) as Brigadier 'JOE' Vandeleur (41) in "A Bridge too Far"
 
May 2011
545
New Iberia, La.
#85
I am a few days late on this, but I don't spend as much time on Historum since it was invaded by so many Charlie Hunts.

RE Post #74
D-DAY--THE LONGEST DAY---been on TV at least three times this week.
I posted this here a couple of years ago-- The British actor Richard Todd (who was also in D-DAY--6th June with Robert Taylor) was actually a 24 year old Captain in the parachute regiment (6th Airborne) who parachuted into Normandy midnight on D-Day, his unit supported the capture of the vital Pegasus Bridge where he met Maj. John Howard who led the desperate eight-hour firefight against German counter-attacks. In the movie Todd played the role of Howard and another actor played the part of the, much younger, Todd.
This raises the (for me) irritation of vain middle aged actors playing the parts of men 10-20 years younger than they are.
I posted this four years ago
They seemed to have a lot of ageing Male leads in the 1960s--I watched "The Longest Day" a few weeks ago and while it was very much a "cameo" film the casting was a bit of a pensioners plan. Robert Ryan (age 53) playing General Gavin (age 37) giving orders to John Wayne (age 56) playing Colonel Vandervoort (age 27), Red Buttons (age 48) playing a buck private paratooper.
Richard Todd (age 44) who was actually part of the unit that captured Pegasus Bridge did not play his 21 year old self, but his commanding officer who was 34.

This was not lost on David Attenborough and William Goldman who cast Ryan O'Neal (age 38) as General Gavin and MIchael Caine (43) as Brigadier 'JOE' Vandeleur (41) in "A Bridge too Far"
I get where you are coming from, but I look at Todd's insistence on playing Howard as one of modesty in not wanting to play himself - the war hero. I don't really have a problem with the age differentials. It is a Hollywood thing. Lee Marvin was 56 when he made "The Big Red One" and yet I can't imagine anyone else playing that role. (It is a bit creepy when the movie starts with a 56 year old man playing a private in WWI - thank you makeup person!) I would be pissed off if I was an actress however. You don't see very many aged actresses playing younger roles.
 
Likes: JPK
May 2011
545
New Iberia, La.
#86
FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION - SAINTS AND SOLDIERS
“Saints and Soldiers” is “based on true events” centering on the Malmedy Massacre in the Battle of the Bulge. It was a very low budget film (less than $1 million), but did well at film festivals winning numerous awards. The cast is as low rent as you can get. It was released in 2003. It is the rare war movie that has overt religious overtones.
The no name cast acts well. The movie also makes good use of numerous reenactors and authentic weapons. The action scenes are surprisingly good considering the low budget. They are obviously influenced by Saving Private Ryan. The cinematography is fine. Be forewarned, the movie is pro-Mormonism, but it is subtle. As far as accuracy, it’s portrayal of the Malmedy Massacre is satisfactory. This sincere little movie deserves to be watched and is much superior to its cousins.

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Likes: Edratman
Sep 2012
9,014
India
#87
BACK-STORY - Lawrence of Arabia

“Lawrence of Arabia” is considered one of the great classic movies. It is #7 on AFI’s latest list of the greatest movies. It is #1 on the Epics list. The film is considered to be the best of director David Lean’s awesome resume (which includes “Bridge on the River Kwai”). It is loosely based on T.E. Lawrence’s “The Seven Pillars of Wisdom”. The screenplay was first written by Michael Wilson, then Robert Bolt was brought in and changed virtually all the dialogue and characterizations. Wilson was uncredited partly because he was blacklisted for communist sympathies. His contribution was not credited until 1995. The movie’s desert scenes were filmed in Jordan and Morocco. King Hussein of Jordan provided a brigade of the Arab Legion as extras. Peter O’Toole was not the first choice for Lawrence. Albert Finney was unavailable and Marlon Brando turned the role down. Anthony Perkins and Montgomery Clift were considered. Jose Ferrer agreed to appear in it only after being guaranteed pay that ended up being more than what was paid to O’Toole and Sharif combined! The movie took over two years from start to finish. In one scene the O’Toole that finishes at the bottom of a staircase is two years older than he was at the top of the staircase. The desert shoots were difficult. There was the 130 degree temperatures and the sandstorms and the critters. At one point, O’Toole was thrown from his camel and only was saved from being trampled by the camel standing protectively over him. By the way, O’Toole had to sit on a sponge pad to survive all the riding (the Arab extras called him “Lord of the Sponge”). It was all worth it as the film was universally acclaimed. It won Academy Awards for Best Picture, Director, Art Direction, Cinematography (Freddie Young), Score (Maurice Jarre), Editing, and Sound. It was nominated for Adapted Screenplay, Actor (O’Toole lost to Gregory Peck for “To Kill a Mockingbird”), and Supporting Actor (Sharif).
I would have given the picture an Academy Award for best dialogue, too. Remember ' Never seen a man killed by a sword before." ?
 
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May 2011
545
New Iberia, La.
#90
BACK-STORY: The Grand Illusion

“The Grand Illusion” is a film by the acclaimed French director Jean Renoir, son of the famous Impressionist painter. He wrote the screenplay along with Charles Spaak. Renoir was inspired by his own experiences as a reconnaissance pilot in WWI, but the film is far from autobiographical. Von Stroheim wore Renoir’s uniform in the movie. The title of the film was influenced by the book “The Great Illusion” by British economist Norman Angell. Angell argued that war was useless because nations have common economic interests. Good call, Norm! The movie was famously banned in Italy and Germany. Goebbels even had Renoir labeled “Cinematic Enemy #1” and attempted to have all copies of the prints destroyed. Fortunately, a print was recovered by the U.S. Army (no, not by the Monuments Men) after the war and Renoir was able to accomplish a celebrated restoration. The movie was the first foreign language film to be nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards.

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