Waterloo 1970

Amazon Instant Video

(124) IMDb 7.2/10
Available in HD

After his abdication Napoleon Bonaparte is exiled to the island of Elba. However, he escapes to be reunited with his generals and troops, and mounts a last desperate bid for power at the what is now known as the Battle of Waterloo. He has, however, reckoned without the British forces led by Arthur Welsley, the Duke of Wellington, who had just returned from a successful campaign in Spain.

Starring:
Jack Hawkins, Virginia Mckenna
Runtime:
2 hours 8 minutes

Available in HD on supported devices

Waterloo

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Product Details

Genres Military & War, Drama, Action & Adventure, Historical
Director Sergei Bondarchuk
Starring Jack Hawkins, Virginia Mckenna
Supporting actors Ian Ogilvy, Orson Welles, Christopher Plummer, Rod Steiger, Michael Wilding, Rupert Davies, Dan O'Herlihy
Studio Sony Pictures International
BBFC rating Universal, suitable for all
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Kenneth M. Pizzi on 29 July 2008
Format: DVD
In the tradition of the cinematic epics like Kubrick's "Spartacus" and Mann's "Fall of the Roman Empire," Bondarchuk's "Waterloo" succeeds in depicting Napoleon's desperate and final bid for power and glory. Steiger, no stranger to roles that have consistently challenged his acting ability, is quite good as the deposed French emperor who narrowly lost his final battle. Orson Welles' appearance as Louis XVIII, is far too brief but most welcome, and Plummer as Lord Wellington is a casting director's dream. Dino de Laurentiis has produced some questionable if not laughable films in the past "King Kong" (1976) and "Flash Gordon" (1980); however, "Waterloo" must be seen as one of his better efforts.

Many critics here at Amazon will applaud the many and well-orchestrated battle scenes--a case-in-point are the great aerial shots of the British "squares" organized against Marshall Ney (Dan O' Herlihy) and the French cavalry--and one can easily understand the film's strong visual appeal, but this opus succeeds in other ways too.

The non-battle scenes, for instance, like the ball before the battle which introduces us to Napoleon's nemesis, Wellington, and the scenes of Napoleon dictating letters to his secretaries, are thoughtful touches that broaden the scope of this highly entertaining film and successfully depict an aristocratically genteel milieu shattered by the cataclysm that is nineteenth-century warfare. On the surface, an era characterized by the gentility of the landed gentry and sportsmanlike conduct on the battlefield, later destroyed by the real brutalities and devastation of war.
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69 of 73 people found the following review helpful By David C. Read on 26 May 2004
Format: DVD
This is a truly astonishing film. I doubt it could even be attempted today. The number of uniformed extras is astonishing considering the cost of the uniforms involved, especially the beautiful French cavalry and infantry uniforms. The charge of the Scots Grays Cavalry is magnificently filmed, clearly inspired by a famous painting.
The battle is somewhat accurately depicted, insofar as the order of engagements, charges, and skirmishes. Toward the end, however, it becomes confusing, and has obviously been severely edited for time. Other reviewers have stated that the film was originally four hours long. This version is only a little over two hours. I would not have complained had it been a full hour longer, so long as that hour was devoted to accurately depicting the battle, and showing off some of the amazing uniforms, especially of the French cavalry. Frankly, the battle itself seems to have been somewhat shortchanged in this shorter version.
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56 of 60 people found the following review helpful By TJP on 12 Oct 2003
Format: DVD
This film has probably the greatest battle scene ever shown, the detail and comparison to the original battlefield is excellent. The film however, in this form, suffers from poor cuts and editing. When will a release of the original 4 hour epic take place? this has over 2 hours dedicated to the battle. Still a great film withgreat performances, and a must for either the historical or war fan.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Sheggy on 10 Sep 2003
Format: VHS Tape
Needless to say this film tells the story and events of, and leading up to the battle of Waterloo in 1815. Much unlike most other films of this sort of genre, "Waterloo" shows the events of 1815 from both the French and British perspective, but suprisingly mostly from the french perspective. To make things even better for this film, the plot is very accurate to the actual events and creates an exciting and well developed build up to the main battle sequence.
Christopher Plummer makes an outstanding performance as Wellington, but without any doubt the finest performance comes from Rod Steiger as Napoleon. Steiger gives one of the finest performances that I have ever seen from any actor and creates a character that the audience can clearly relate to and suprisingly, grow to like. It simply cannot be said how brilliantly Steiger acted in this film.
For anybody who is interested in history or battles on a massive scale, this is the film for you. The only problem that I found with this film was the bad dubbing with some of the extras in the VHS version of the film. This however may have been cleaned up in the DVD but i dont really know.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By RR Waller TOP 500 REVIEWER on 10 Dec 2011
Format: DVD
In "Waterloo", the 1970 film directed by Sergei Bondarchuk, I thought Rod Steiger would not do as Napoleon while Christopher Plummer as Wellington would be ideal. I have to admit that, after a short while, Steiger began to convince me. Plummer just is Wellington.

Sunday 18 June 1815 is re-created in spectacular fashion with a host of British stars, all playing there various parts to perfection. I understand it is entirely historically accurate but it does create the feeling of the times, the reactions and attitudes of the generals and the awfulness and terror of the fighting.

Having the DVD means I can see again and appreciate some of the subtle points I missed and, at 2.00, I can see again a great film made on a vast canvas with a real cast of thousands - no CGI.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Junius on 25 Jan 2012
Format: DVD
A simply amazing spectacle of thousands of uniformed troops engaged in one of history's major battles. Although the details of the battle aren't always correct, and the contribution of the non-British troops to Wellington's victory are downplayed, this is probably the best recreation of the battle we'll ever see and certainly puts Sharpe's Waterloo into the shade. Good acting by the leads and fantastic music to boot. The dancing sequence is less good - Victorian dances not regency period, and the political background could have been doen better, as Austrian and Russian armies were moving towards France, too, and the ongoing Congress of Vienna is missed completely. A very good film indeed.
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