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Crazy! I mean like so many positive waves maybe we can't lose! You're on!

Brian G. Hutton followed the considerable success he had had with 1968's Where Eagles Dare, with this, another men on a mission movie - only this one is very much a different animal. Hutton directs and Troy Kennedy-Martin writes the screenplay, it stars Clint Eastwood, Telly Savalas, Donald Sutherland and Don Rickles. Music is by Lalo Schifrin and cinematography is by Gabriel Figueroa.

When it comes to light that there is a considerable stash of Nazi gold waiting to be plundered behind enemy lines in occupied France, a group of maverick U.S. soldiers set off on a deadly mission to locate and gain...

Utterly wonderful. Kelly's Heroes mixes together war movie action staples with black comedy gold, the greed and insanity of war having its cheek poked by a sharp and bloody tongue. The script is clever, often very funny, often poignant and poised, and it's this that lets a great cast have a ball. You have the straight laced delivery of Eastwood playing against Savalas' macho rage, and Rickles' jumping- bean turn jostling with Sutherland's pre-hippy malarkey. Character names range from the likes of Oddball, Crapgame, Big Joe, Little Joe and Cowboy, a rogue group of soldiers deciding they want to grab something for themselves.

The journey to find the gold is of course far from straight forward, with Hutton constructing some white hot action scenes. And it's here where it often gets forgotten that Kelly's Heroes does not forget the blood shed during war. People do die, it's not all fun and frolics, and Hutton knows his way around great suspense passages. Witness the brilliant minefield sequence and the ticking clock finale where we are never sure if any of the men will achieve their goal. So laugh while you ponder, then? Absolutely. Kelly's Heroes is caper and chaos, beef and brawn, but always cunning and crafty as well. 9/10

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