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Battle of the Bulge

1966

NR CC

An all-star cast led by Henry Fonda is featured in the epic dramatization of one of the most important battles of World War II.

Starring:
Henry Fonda, Robert Shaw
Runtime:
2 hours, 41 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Military & War, Drama
Director Ken Annakin
Starring Henry Fonda, Robert Shaw
Supporting actors Robert Ryan, Dana Andrews, George Montgomery, Ty Hardin, Pier Angeli, Barbara Werle, Charles Bronson, Hans Christian Blech, Werner Peters, James MacArthur, Karl-Otto Alberty, Telly Savalas, Steve Rowland, Robert Woods, Charles Stalmaker, David Thomson, Sebastian Cavalieri, Raoul Perez
Studio Warner Bros.
MPAA rating NR (Not Rated)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
The issue of the DVD today has yielded a few surprises. There is some interesting material included in the DVD with the Theatrical Trailer, Interviews with the Director and Robert Shaw and also a short Black and White film is shown on how it was filmed including footage of the German military advisor who insured an accurate detailing of uniforms, events, etc. in this basically fictitious account of the famous battle of world war 2. Now what needs to be said is that this is a polished transfer of the widescreen film. The overture is put back and all of the extras that were usually cut. Including the "Panzerlied" gathering of tank commanders that is sometimes missing from television broadcasts as well as the "save the son but shoot the father" scene. The musical score by Frankel is one of the best made in a war film presentation in a full orchestra by the New philharmonic. They have restored the original soundtrack to the DVD and it is impressive for a movie that was made in the 60's. Someone cared about putting this one back together and it shows! Graphics, scenery, etc. are all very impressive. Although this movie was panned as to accuracy as far as the situation, it is a very entertaining movie and is well remembered by everyone who saw it in the movies when it was released. Seeing it again now, it is as if I were back in that movie house and as if time had not moved on. A GREAT release! Worth it to any fan of this film.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
THE BATTLE OF THE BULGE is a great war movie. It contains everything you could hope to find a cinematic military classic: Action, tank battles, outstanding pyrotechnics, superb cast, and wonderful soundtrack. Before I continue I want to make it clear that movie THE BATTLE OF THE BULGE should not be confused with the historical Ardennes Offensive. THE BATTLE OF THE BULGE is essentially an action-packed cowboy and indian movie with the Americans as the cowboys and the Germans as the indians. If you watch the film with this understanding you will enjoy it much more.

For the first time, possibly ever, the complete film is presented on DVD in wide-screen. Scenes that have been missing for decades have been restored to the film. Now you can see Lt. Col. Hessler marching between the parked rows of tanks, Hessler's introduction to the English-speaking commandos, the Belgian sniper scene, Charles Bronson's confrontation with Robert Shaw in Ambleve, and the lieutenant (James MacArthur) and his sergeant watching the German advance from a snowy hilltop.

This version is truly wide-screen. In fact, when I premiered this new DVD release, with myself as the sole audience (as my family immediately fled the room), I was amazed at the width of the picture. During my first screening of this edition, I tended to pay more attention to what was going on to the right and to the left of the main characters. This additional perspective, in many ways, makes this almost a new movie.

The DVD is equipped with special features. The movie trailer has been restored and includes alternate takes and dialogue that were not included in the original film. Additionally included are two black and white featurettes on the making of the film.
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Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
BLU-RAY REVIEW
I am updating this review (Dec. 9, 2008) to address the Blu-Ray edition of this movie which I feel is worthy of praise. In addition to a very impressive 1080p high definition picture which has nice contrast, vibrant colors and a fantastic level of detail (just witness the Christmas tree and flags in the first scene between Henry Fonda and Robert Ryan), the Blu-Ray also boasts a scene specific audio commentary featuring Director Ken Annakin and actor James MacArthur.
The two are obviously very good friends and the commentary strikes a nice balance between technical details, preproduction and filming background and friendly chatter. I found it enjoyable.
The Blu-Ray also transfers over the two vintage featurettes and theatrical trailer found on the DVD, but the addition of the audio commentary and the superior high definition picture makes this an easy recommendation for an upgrade from the subpar DVD format.
I read the concerns over "fogging"n some of the previous reviews and did not notice it on my Blu-Ray, except in instances when it was obviously a deliberate decision. For the most part this is an impressive presentation. For those wanting the check out the HD picture, the high definition premium commercial-free TV channel HDNet Movies has been showing "Battle of the Bulge" in HD recently.

In the 1960s it seemed to be all the fashion for a host of big name actors to appear in World War II movies. From THE LONGEST DAY to THE GUNS OF NAVARONE, THE DIRTY DOZEN, THE GREAT ESCAPE and BATTLE OF BRITAIN every big name actor made his appearance in big epic war pictures commemorating a war that, at that time, was still fresh in the memories of many.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Warner Brother's 1965 epic war movie that portrays the German Ardennes Counter-Offensive in December of 1944 during WWII. Battle of the Bulge depicts Adolf Hitler's gamble that committed three German armies to attack west to Antwerp, Belgium, and halt the Allies to force a negotiation for peace. Producer Milton Sperling and Director Ken Annakin created a movie of grand scale, but apparently chose big-screen action over historical precision to maximize box office revenue. Long relegated to infrequent television play and a chopped video tape edition, it returns on DVD restored for movie fans who like tanks and a screenplay that borders on camp by contemporary standards.

The movie depicts this historic battle through several fictional characters that eventually meet in a climatic battle that seals the Germans' fate. Henry Fonda is Lieutenant Colonel Dan Kiley, an American intelligence officer whose warnings of the coming attack fall on deaf ears. Robert Shaw is Colonel Hessler, the charismatic German Panzer (tank) commander who leads the armor spearhead towards Belgium. Charles Bronson is Major Wolinski, a tough American commander fighting the German onslaught under severe odds. Telly Savalas is Sergeant Guffy, a jaded American tanker who is in the thick of the battle facing superior German tanks. James MacArther is Lieutenant Weaver, a slack infantry leader who survives a massacre of Allied prisoners by German soldiers. Sperling and Annakin appear to have chosen this simpler screenplay to create a few heroes who fight to overcome a seemingly invincible villain, forgoing a complex storyline as used in 20th Century Fox's 1962 Longest Day. It works OK, certainly not on the level of Band of Brothers, and lends a somewhat campy appeal for this 1960's action flick.
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