Tag Archive | World War 2

FURY: MR. JOLIE TAKES ON THE KRAUTS IN A MOBILE METAL BOX

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In WWII United States Armor forces took a hell of beating. The slaughter of tankers was almost as great as that of airmen or frontal assault/amphibious infantrymen. NAZI armor forces were highly experienced and had better safer tanks with larger higher velocity main tubes than the American Army heavy combat tank, the M4 Sherman. We learn all that in a title card at the start of Brad Pitt’s WW2 action flick Fury.

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MONUMENTS MEN: AN INTERESTING STORY THAT DESERVED A MUCH MUCH BETTER MOVIE

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On Saturday 1 March, I was bored and decided to go see George Clooney’s Monuments Men, since that was just about the only movie that I had slight interest in seeing. I went in knowing full well they had to futz around the real story to make a movie and I was OK with that. However I was not OK with such a unique and amazing story getting such a slight, almost madcap, whimsical movie made about what was a triumph of the human spirit in a bleak, dark moment of history. Read More…

Shining Through (1992)

Director: David Seltzer

Starring: Melanie Griffith, Michael Douglas, Liam Neeson

Release date: January 31 (US). This replaces the unavailable Hurricane Smith. Am I missing anything there? I’m only asking because this Shining Through bollocks is unbelievable. May contain Berlin-quality strudel and spoilers…

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Cross Of Iron (1977)

Director: Sam Peckinpah

Starring: James Coburn, Maximilian Schell, James Mason

Release date: January 28 (GER). This replaces the un-procurable Uomini Si Nasce Poliziotti Simuore – what a gob-full that is – from my initial list as the next available draw. It’s the second run out for Peckinpah and incredibly, the fifth film I’ve nabbed featuring a German viewpoint. May contain bloody squibs and spoilers…

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Lacombe, Lucien (1974)

Director: Louis Malle

Starring: Pierre Blaise, Aurore Clement, Holger Lowenadler

Release date: January 30 (FRA). This is the fourth film in the series to land on the German side of the war. As sports commentator David Coleman used to say, “Extraordinary!” May contain animal abuse and spoilers…

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The Night Of The Generals (1967)

Director: Anatole Litvak

Starring: Peter O’Toole, Omar Sharif, Tom Courtenay

Release date: January 29 (UK). I haven’t seen this! I thought I had – possibly I caught 10-20 minutes while channel hopping once then forgot all about it. The end was very familiar. The other incredible thing is, I’m 3 films in and it’s the third war movie from a German perspective! What are the odds on that? May contain nervous tics and spoilers…

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Obchod Na Korze (1966)

Director: Jan Kadar

Starring: Josef Kroner, Ida Kaminska, Martin Holly

Release date: January 24 (US). I actually watched this last year, think it was September so technically I should’ve marked it ‘seen’ when I posted the list. Just wish I’d taken notes back in September. Anyway, we’re back in World War 2 again. May contain rum and spoilers…

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36 Hours (1965)

Director: George Seaton

Starring: James Garner, Eva Marie Saint, Rod Taylor

Release date: January 28 (US, movie debut). Right then, here we go, can’t believe I’m doin’ this…. Happy Birthday to me, squashed tomatoes and brie! I should say as I will each time (in case of random drive-by visitors) this write-up may contain spoilers

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Jarv’s Favourite Books: King Rat by James Clavell

It’s time for me to have a look back through the extensive book collection I’ve got at home and pick out another one of my favourite novels. James Clavell’s King Rat is a book I discovered in my teens, having read my way through the potboilers Shogun and Tai Pan. Both of these books are great fun, Shogun in particular, but reek of airport fiction- they’re the kind of weighty piece of trash that you’d read on the beach somewhere and on return home forget forever. Nevertheless, Clavell penned an entire Asian saga (this is some undertaking, frankly) and both of the aforementioned pieces of enjoyable trash followed distinct and defining events in the Far East. Shogun featured the rise of Toranaga, in 17th Century Japan, and Tai Pan was about the Opium Wars and the foundation of Hong Kong. King Rat, despite being the first book he wrote, is the fourth novel in the series (I’ve not read Gai Jin for some reason) and is a heavily fictionalised account of Clavell’s own time in Changi prisoner of war camp, and is, I believe, vastly superior to the hugely overrated Empire of the Sun (I really don’t like Ballard), which deals with a similar story.  Read More…

7 DECEMBER 1941

The first inkling of a problem the Sailors and Marines aboard the battle wagons berthed in Pearl Harbor had that early morning,7 December 1941, was when the speakers started blaring the General Quarters alarm (http://www.wiziq.com/tutorial/55519-fx-general-quarter-alarm.) Japanese dive bombers were hitting Battleship Row in a double wave operation designed to cripple America’s Pacific fleet. This attack was supposed to leave the Imperial Japanese Navy as the sole naval power in the Far East. From that point of view, the attack on Pearl Harbor was an utter failure. Read More…