Best War Movies of 1964
Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
After the insane General Jack D. Ripper initiates a nuclear strike on the Soviet Union, a war room full of politicians, generals and a Russian diplomat all frantically try to stop the nuclear strike.
Because of a technical defect an American bomber team mistakenly orders the destruction of Moscow. The President of the United States has but little time to prevent an atomic catastrophe from occurring.
As the Allied forces approach Paris in August 1944, German Colonel Von Waldheim is desperate to take all of France's greatest paintings to Germany. He manages to secure a train to transport the valuable art works even as the chaos of retreat descends upon them. The French resistance however wants to stop them from stealing their national treasures but have received orders from London that they are not to be destroyed. The station master, Labiche, is tasked with scheduling the train and making it all happen smoothly but he is also part of a dwindling group of resistance fighters tasked with preventing the theft. He and others stage an elaborate ruse to keep the train from ever leaving French territory.
In 1879, during the Anglo-Zulu War, man-of-the-people Lt. Chard and snooty Lt. Bromhead are in charge of defending the isolated and vastly outnumbered Natal outpost of Rorke's Drift from tribal hordes.
The Fall of the Roman Empire
Drawn from the same events that later inspired Gladiator, the film charts the power-hungry greed and father-son betrayal that led to Rome's collapse at the bloody hands of the Barbarians.
Culloden, Scottish Highlands, April 16th, 1746. It was one of the most mishandled and brutal battles ever fought in Great Britain. Its aftermath was tragic. The men responsible for such a disaster must be exposed. The men, women and children who suffered because of it must be remembered.
Germans kidnap an American major and try to convince him that World War II is over, so that they can get details about the Allied invasion of Europe out of him.
King and Country
During World War I, Army Private Arthur James Hamp is accused of desertion during battle. The officer assigned to defend him at his court-martial, Captain Hargreaves, finds out there is more to the case than meets the eye.
Guns at Batasi
An anachronistic martinet RSM on a remote Colonial African army caught in a local coup d'etat must use his experience to defend those in his care.
The Americanization of Emily
American sailor Charlie Madison falls for a pretty Englishwoman while trying to avoid a senseless and dangerous D-Day mission concocted by a deranged admiral.
Behold a Pale Horse
Manuel Artiguez, a famous bandit during the Spanish civil war, has lived in French exile for 20 years. When his mother is dying he considers visiting her secretly in his Spanish home town. But his biggest enemy, the Spanish police officer Vinolas, prepared a trap at the hospital as a chance to finally catch Artiguez.
When Norwegian resistance leader Lieutenant Erik Bergman reports the location of a German V-2 rocket fuel plant, the Royal Air Force's 633 Squadron is assigned the mission to destroy it. The plant is in a seemingly-impregnable location beneath an overhanging cliff at the end of a long, narrow fjord lined with anti-aircraft guns. The only way to destroy the plant is by collapsing the cliff on top of it.
1945, on an old cargo ship somewhere deep in the Pacific ocean: Captain Morton strives to become commander, so he demands the maximum quality of work from his crew, without granting them any freedom or favors - ignoring that they're thousand of miles away from the front. In one word: he drives his crew crazy. They are near mutiny, but no-one dares to do the first step. Until Ensign Pulver plays a prank on the captain that triggers fatal consequences...
The Finest Hours
A biography of Winston Churchill, shown through re-creations and actual film footage and told by Orson Welles.
The Secret Invasion
During World War II, convicts are recruited by the Allies for an extremely hazardous mission.
An ultra-realistic depiction of life in a Marine Corps brig (or jail) at a camp in Japan in 1957. Marine prisoners are awakened and put through work details for the course of a single day, submitting in the course of it to extremely harsh and shocking physical and mental degradation and abuse.
The 7th Dawn
Political and personal intrigues surround a group of characters in Malaya, after the close of the Second World War.
Man in the Middle
In a remote jungle outpost in the Far Eastern theater of World War II, a hotheaded American soldier murders an allied British sergeant in cold blood. Stalwart American Lt. Colonel Barney Adams (Mitchum) is dispatched to defend him in the ensuing court martial. But when Lt. Adams starts encountering roadblocks in his search for evidence, and his key witnesses start disappearing one after another, he soon realizes he's merely a pawn in a mysterious conspiracy that could extend to the highest levels of military power.
The Thin Red Line
Set during the Allied invasion of the island of Guadalcanal in the Pacific theater during WWII, this film is based on the novel by James Jones. Keir Dullea is Private Doll, who dreads the invasion and steals a pistol to help him protect himself. Sergeant Welsh (Jack Warden), a caustic, battle-scarred veteran, hates Doll, whom he considers a coward. In battle, Doll kills a Japanese soldier and is filled with remorse, which further angers the sergeant. The next day, an emboldened Doll wipes out an entire enemy machine gun post and begins to feel as sadistic as Welsh. The two must work together to clear away some mines, but as they do, their platoon is surprised by a Japanese raid.
Wrongfully imprisoned for a crime he didn't commit, Minnesota Clay seeks revenge on the man who withheld evidence at his trial. There is a problem however, he is going blind.
Back Door to Hell
During WWII, a three-man commando team places its trust in the hands of a band of Filipino resistors, as they try to knock out a Japenese communication center.
Advance to the Rear
As punishment for their incompetence in battle, disgraced Union soldier Capt. Jared Heath and his apathetic commanding officer, Col. Claude Brackenbury, are reassigned away from the front lines. The hapless Heath and Brackenbury must now lead a ragtag group on a classified mission to protect a transport for the U.S. Treasury. Complicating matters is Martha Lou Williams, a Confederate agent posing as a lady of the evening.
The Walls of Hell
In the final days of the battle of Manila during World War II, fanatical Japanese naval forces barricade themselves inside the walls of Intramuros, the ancient Spanish walled city of Manila. In a suicidal last stand, the Japanese hold many thousand Filipinos captive within the fortress, despite the incessant bombardment of United States artillery. An American war correspondent, Murray, arrives at the front line where a guerrilla unit led by American Lieutenant Sorenson makes contact with a young Filipino fighter, Nardo, who has escaped the fortress through a sewer passage. Nardo proposes a plan to rescue the prisoners through the tunnel.
A seasoned Sargent with a sorry unit, led by an angry 1st Lt., to take out an enemy hold for a convoy to proceed. After their success the Sarge and the crew meet up with another Lieutenant - Female nurse.
Seven Against the Sun
In February of 1941, South African troops are in action against the Italian forces on the northern frontier of Kenya. An Italian invasion, aimed at pushing the Allied Forces out of Central and East Africa, is imminent. The South African Command realizes it has no forces at its disposal capable of stopping the Italian objective, so they resort to a grand bluff...
Face in the Rain
An American spy hides in an apartment. But the woman who lives there is herself the mistress of a German Officer.
The Secret of Blood Island
Based on the true story of a British secret agent, shot down over Malaya near to a Allied POW forced labour camp. There she is hidden, disguised as a youthful prisoner, until her escape can be effected. The costs of keeping her identity secret fall on all the POW's as the Japanese embark on a policy of ruthless terror to extract her and the focus shifts to the conflicts of the group' s collective concerns against the necessities of personal survival.
Fields of Sacrifice
This 1964 documentary returns to the battlefields where over 100,000 Canadian soldiers lost their lives in the First and Second World Wars. The film also visits cemeteries where servicemen are buried. Filmed from Hong Kong to Sicily, this documentary is designed to show Canadians places they have reason to know but may not be able to visit. Produced for the Canadian Department of Veteran Affairs by the renowned documentary filmmaker Donald Brittain. (NFB)