Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Battle of the Bulge - Movie (1965)

I watched the Battle of the Bulge movie recently (released in 1965). I don't recall the last time I watched it, but it must have been before I started writing the Sgt. Dunn novels in 2004. The reason I point this out is that the writing of the novels has deeply improved my knowledge of WWII, partly due to a natural inclination toward WWII history and partly due to the need for accurate details which comes only from research and extensive reading.

As a result, what I had previously thought was a pretty good war movie became barely watchable. The reason? So many errors permeated the movie it was like watching a train wreck, waiting to see what mistake would come next.

I won't attempt to list the errors; you can Google for them and find a huge list someone took the time to compile. I'll just mention the big one that drove me crazy: the terrain. As you know, the battle took place largely in the Ardennes Forest, but the movie seemed to be in a mountainous arid location! In reality, the Germans had a terrible time finding roads to move their armor. The movie tank battles were taking place over great open distances rather than in the tight confines of the forest.

If you want to see what the battle was really like, I think you're better off finding something on the History or Military History channels.