1960s Operation Crossbow (1965)

Published on February 17th, 2012 | by Chris

1

Operation Crossbow (1965)


Reviewed by:
Rating:
2
On February 17, 2012
Last modified:October 3, 2012

Summary:

I hate that feeling where a movie sounds like it might be good, or at least interesting, and then, well, its not. That's what happened with Operation Crossbow, anyway.


Operation Crossbow (1965)I hate that feeling where a movie sounds like it might be good, or at least interesting, and then, well, its not.  That's what happened with Operation Crossbow, anyway.

Billed as a movie about a "top secret operation to infiltrate the Nazi's secret rocket base!" turns out to be not much more than a rather dull attempt at intrigue or something.  Probably more an excuse to get Sophia Loren on screen, in a sequence that takes far far too much screen time.

Part of the reason I watched this movie, was I had just finished watching the recent NOVA episode on the British recon photo experts and how they managed to deduce the locations and meaning of the V-1 and V-2 rocket sites.  This seemed relevant.  Well, I think I enjoyed the NOVA episode more.

Long story short, American Curtis (George Peppard) and Brit Lindemann (Trevor Howard) infiltrate the base disguised as scientists.  They (of course) manage to expose the position of the base exactly as British bombers make their run.  Of course this is at the cost of their own lives.  Making it all more dramatic I suppose.

Turns out "Crossbow" was actually the name of the over-arching operation against the German long-range weapons program, you can read about it here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Crossbow

As a movie, well, this movie anyway.  I was pretty disappointed.  It felt more like an episode of some 2nd rate 1960's TV series to me.  Your milage may vary of course....  Giving a 4/10...  I just wasn't feeling the love on this one.

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Description

Operation Crossbow was one among many '60s films aiming, in the wake of The Guns of Navarone, to cash in on nostalgia for "the Good War" of 20 years earlier, plus snag a share of the spy-movie market stoked by James Bond...

DVD Information

Binding: DVD
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Audience Rating: PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
Brand: Warner Manufacturing
Manufacturer: Warner Home Video
Original Release Date:
Actors:
  • Sophia Loren
  • George Peppard
  • Trevor Howard
  • John Mills
  • Richard Johnson

Features

  • Factory sealed DVD

Reviews

Customer reviews
Average Customer Review

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sophia Loren could not save this Movie, May 10, 2016
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This review is from: Operation Crossbow (Amazon Video)
The V-2 rocket rained destruction on London at the end of the Second World War.
You don’t feel the true impact of the V-2 until you see it. I saw a captured V-2 at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington and was bowled over by its size. It seemed as tall as a five story building.
How could a vicious Nazi tyranny have made such advances in rocket technology? This is the very question haunting the British and Americans from 1943 onwards.
The true hunt for Nazi rockets (the V-1 and V-2) spread across many occupied European countries. Operation Crossbow (made in 1965) focusses on the destruction of one factory in Germany making the rockets.
Produced by Carlo Ponti and filmed in the UK, Operation Crossbow is full of the best European and American stars of the 1960s. Top billing goes to Sophia Loren, George Peppard, and Richard Johnson, but there is a host of very famous British stars like John Mills, Trevor Howard and Richard Todd.
The film begins with the... Read more
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Remarkably Realistic World War II Espionage Saga., June 14, 2014
By 
Chip Kaufmann (Asheville, NC United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Operation Crossbow (DVD)
I saw OPERATION CROSSBOW in the mid 1960s when it first came out and was surprised by how low key and how remarkably effective it was compared to the average Hollywood World War II movie. Even as a young teenager I found the story gripping and quickly got used to the lack of Hollywood extras such as a non-stop score, plenty of action, and a budding romance between the two leads. It was my introduction to the British "stiff upper lip" approach that concentrates more on plot and character than on action set pieces however when you consider the scope of the finale and that it was done without the aid of CGI, it's even more impressive now then it was then. Although Sophia Loren is giving top billing (thanks to her husband producer Carlo Ponti) and George Peppard is a major player, most of the actors are appropriately British as this film was made by them and for them. Casting Loren and Peppard guaranteed that the movie would have international and American appeal as well and the film was... Read more
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great WWII Film from a Bygone Era – One of my favorites, October 18, 2014
By 
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This review is from: Operation Crossbow (DVD)
OPERATION CROSSBOW is one of my favorite WWII espionage films of all time. To classify it strictly as an espionage film is not exactly correct. There is quite a lot here about the German development of the V-1 rocket and how Britain counteracted and defended herself. The V-2 followed shortly after and we see the effects and devastation on London. In between we get the espionage story of allied agents trained and how they infiltrated Nazi Europe to gain access into the German rocket development operations.

This is a great film with a great cast and production values. It was made at a time in the 1960’s when large budgeted WWII films and epics were in vogue. The film may seem a bit uneven and protracted at times, but it is what it is and this is a very good film. This is one of those favorites of mine and I return to it often.
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Operation Crossbow (1965) Chris

Summary: I hate that feeling where a movie sounds like it might be good, or at least interesting, and then, well, its not. That's what happened with Operation Crossbow, anyway.

2.0


User Rating: 0 (0 votes)


About the Author

I've been watching war movies for probably 25 years now. Since December 2006 I've been sharing my habit and passion for these movies here on this site.



One Response to Operation Crossbow (1965)

  1. paul says:

    one of my favorite movies with george peppard.

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