June 5th, 2014: The Longest Day (1962)

The Longest Day

Cast and Crew: Cornelius Ryan (Book and Screenplay); Darryl F. Zanuck (Producer); Maurice Jarre (Composer); Eddie Albert, Paul Anka, Richard Burton, Red Buttons, Sean Connery, Ray Danton, Fabian, Mel Ferrer, Henry Fonda, Steve Forrest, Gert Frobe, Jeffrey Hunter, Curd Jurgens, Peter Lawford, Roddy McDowell, Sal Mineo, Robert Mitchum, Edmond O’Brien, Robert Ryan, George Segal, Rod Steiger, Peter van Eyck, Robert Wagner, Stuart Whitman, John Wayne, Richard Dawson, Bernard Fox, Frank Finlay, Bob Steele

What It’s About: The actions of the men and women-American, English, French, German-who fought in Normandy on D-Day are covered in this modern epic.

Why Watch it Today?:  The film starts on June 5th, 1944, showing us preparations and decisions being made that would affect the course of the invasion. The Longest Day is a huge film in terms of not only its length and cast, but in scope, as it covers not just the landing on one beach (the course Saving Private Ryan took) but the entire invasion, covering both sides.  The film doesn’t always live up to its ambitions, but it’s worth seeing for the attempt.

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One comment on “June 5th, 2014: The Longest Day (1962)

  1. geelw says:

    This one’s a great war film, but as you noted, it’s got some issues. For me, I think it tries too hard to be funny in spots when it doesn’t need to be (some of the jokes work, though), some of the stunt casting is odd (“Hey, that Paul Anka is popular with the kids! Let’s put him in and sell some more tickets!”). I liked the multiple director angle and the whole look of the film quite a lot, though. So when I have time and it’s on TCM, I’ll catch it.

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