Churchill’s Leopards The mission: The British have to carry out a plan hatched by Churchill himself to blow up a French dam, by bringing in commandos led by the twin brother of the German commander.
This is a decent example of the Italian brand of war movies which, although they never quite reached the artistic heights or levels of influence which their peplums, giallos or Spaghetti Westerns had, frequently offer an offbeat, mildly diverting perspective on familiar historical events. This one here stars Richard Harrison (as an English agent posing as his dead German officer twin brother!) and Klaus Kinski as a sadistic SS official; the fetching female parts (on both sides of the fence, naturally) are personified by Pilar Velazquez and Helga Line’, while Giacomo Rossi Stuart and Antonio Casas have key roles to play within the Resistance lines. There are no overwhelmingly spectacular action set-pieces or jaw-droppingly clever plot twists to speak of, but I found this to be an unassuming and adequately handled time-passer which, unlike some of its Italian war film contemporaries, does not heavily feature Hollywood has-beens in an attempt to pass for one of their productions and is, in any case, mercifully short.
Routine movie featuring the great Kinski
Churchill’s Leopards A routine Italian low budget war action movie about English dam busters working in occupied France. Best feature in the film is, obviously, the great Klaus Kinski whose SS captain brings a sinister edge to the final battle.
All in all an interesting film that suffers from the same problem than most of its peers: lack of ambition. The only scene that stands out is the execution of the resistance leader (by Kinski’s SS men), which makes one wonder why the rest of the film wasn’t made with similar effort.
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