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Where Eagles Dare

One Weekend Major Smith, Lieutenant Schaffer, And A Beautiful Blonde Named Mary Decided To Win World War II
Where Eagles Dare
World War II is raging, and an American general has been captured and is being held hostage in the Schloss Adler, a Bavarian castle that's nearly impossible to breach. It's up to a group of skilled Allied soldiers to liberate the general before it's too late.


John Chard
Major, right now you got me about as confused as I ever hope to be. Directed by Brian G. Hutton and adapted to the screen from his own novel by Alistair MacLean, Where Eagles Dare stars Richard Burton and Clint Eastwood. Music is scored by Ron Goodwin and cinematography is by Arthur Ibbetson. A small group of allied agents are sent on a mission to rescue a Allied General from a Nazi castle stronghold. But there is more that what meets the eye here... Boys own men on a mission in grandiose strokes, MacLean's complex story makes for riveting and exciting entertainment. The story twists and turns like a Python, so full attention to conversational details is very much required, yet it's the fun and kinetic action that holds the most attention. There are stunts galore amongst the Austrian Alps (beautifully photographed by Ibbetson), and as the espionage hokum reaches its crescendo status, so does the explosions, with the makers wasting no opportunity to blow everything up. Burton is classy and enjoying himself, Eastwood laconic and cool, while good support comes from Mary Ure, Patrick Wymark, Michael Hordern and Donald Houston. The running time is a touch too long as MacLean's prose is given weighty treatment for extended chatter, and some back projection work feels unnecessarily cheap, but this is good old machismo fuelled classic cinema regardless. 9/10

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