American/Japanese Souvenir Books

         

                                       

CRASH AND BURN

While watching all those British and German fighters and bombers exploding and diving into the sea or ground during the monumental bore that is Battle of Britain, many of us probably flashed on another bummer entitled The Blue Max and wished we hadn’t been quite so hard on it. Or the Richard Burton-Clint Eastwood Where Eagles Dare, which, compared to either, looks damn near deluxe in its Germanic cloudiness and snow. Directed by Guy Hamilton, Battle of Britain is an all-star snoozefest—with Harry Andrews, Michael Caine, Edward Fox, Trevor Howard, Curt Jurgens, Ian McShane, Kenneth More, Laurence Olivier, Christopher Plummer, Michael Redgrave, Ralph Richardson, Robert Shaw and Susannah York—that hasn’t a single moment of dramatic believability, despite being based on fact. Reportedly the amount of planes gathered for use in the movie would constitute the 11th largest airforce in the world, but its size doesn’t negate the sentiment that the fleet fails to crash and burn fast enough. England’s top moneymaker for 1970—by compulsory attendance? Very poor box office in America. Various DVD versions differ in credits and musical score; some lack translation of Kraut speak. In Panavision, with 70mm blowup. (Opened in Chicago early November, 1969, theatre and format unknown.)

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Text COPYRIGHT © 2004 RALPH BENNER  All Rights Reserved.