Shop now Learn more Shop now Shop Clothing clo_fly_aw15_NA_shoes Shop All Shop All Amazon Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Shop Fire TV Shop now Shop Fire HD 6 Shop Kindle Paperwhite Shop now Shop Now Shop now

Customer Reviews

44
4.0 out of 5 stars
The Victors [DVD] [1963]
Format: DVDChange
Price:£5.99+Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 11 December 2010
I remember the Victors when it was first shown in the cinema in 1963 and I recently purchased the DVD to see how I would react to it now and after watching the film it still has considerable impact if not quite the same as when I watched it the first time around. At its heart the Victors is a deeply anti-war film showing what war does to human beings and in particular to a group of young American GIs and the people they come into contact with in the second world war between 1942 and 1945. It shows that there is no glory in war only killing, brutality, futility, degredation, exploitation and waste. It starts in London in 1942 with two increasingly terrified newly arrived GIs played by George Peppard and George Hamilton standing guard during the blitz as bombers come nearer and nearer and unload their bombs close to where they are standing and how after that how they gradually become hardened to war because of what they see and experience in Sicily and western Europe after D-Day.

Some of the techniques used like an army deserter being executed against a soundtrack of cheerful Christmas carols and two of the victorious soldiers, an American GI and a Russian soldier killing each other simultaneously after they had won the war symbolising the cold war that was to come are a bit obvious but nevertheless the film is a fine, memorable and powerful work by Carl Foremen and there is much to commend in it.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
on 1 November 2010
The Victors is truly one of the great anti-war movies - and yet sadly overlooked in many quarters. There are no heroes in this film, just ordinary, scruffy, tired and dirty soldiers trying to come to terms with finding themselves in a series of unenviable and frightening situations; or perhaps they are heroes in the sense that many of the characters try to retain some dignity and morality in the insanity of war.

There are some genuinely shocking scenarios, such as the sequence where an American soldier, found guilty of desertion, is led to his death by firing squad in the snow-covered landscape of Christmas 1944 (based on a true event), with soundtrack accompaniment of Frank Sinatra singing 'Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas'. This is just one more element in the gradual breaking down of the film's protagonists.

I'll knock one star off for the missing half-hour that another reviewer so rightly points out and I do understand his frustration. It's just that I don't think potential viewers should be put off watching the film because of missing footage - it's no fault of the director, actors or writer. I understand the studio cut the film within weeks of its original release and I'm wondering if no salvageable full-length versions exist. Given the choice, I'd rather see 146 minutes of the original 175 minutes than no film at all.

Great art work on the box cover incidentally.
22 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
on 29 March 2011
The Victors was cut from 175 minutes to 154 minutes during the first weeks of it's release. The shortened running time of the DVD is a consequence of the transfer to the PAL broadcast system adopted in Europe, Australia, and elsewhere, which results in the movie being displayed at 25 frames Per Second, rather than the original Cinema rate of 24 Frames Per Second. This standard applies to all movies transferred to VHS or DVD, or broadcast on television, in those regions. The result is an apparent loss of approximately two and a half minutes per hour.

North America and Japan use a system called NTSC, which broadcasts at 29.976 Frames Per Second. In these regions, instead of 'speeding up' the movie, broadcasters use a technique of duplicating frames to achieve the necessary frame rate during transmission. Because this is done using half frames the 'padding' is barely noticeable, and the movie retains it's original running time. DVD players from these regions do the 'padding' during playback, so the disk is capable of being played at the enhanced frame rate or the original frame rate.

The historical reason for these discrepancies lies in the need for broadcasters and manufacturers to tune their equipment to the mains frequencies of the different regions (50Hz in Europe, 60 Hz in North America). The microprocessor age has seen the widespread introduction of consumer equipment adaptable to multiple standards, so Blu-Ray transfers automatically preserve the original frame rates.
22 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
The film follows a small platoon of American soldiers during WWII and its aftermath from 1942 to 1946 as they work their way through England, France, Italy and Germany. The film is fragmented, a series of episodes complete unto themselves, not surprising since the film is based on a collection of short stories though the book's soldiers have been changed from British to American. Directed by Carl Foreman, the film is a highly uneven, rather unsubtle, ponderous anti-war tract. Example: The execution of a deserter in the snow as Frank Sinatra croons Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas on the soundtrack. Slogging in at 2 1/2 hours, the original cut was closer to the 3 hour mark. In this case, be thankful for the cutting shears. Not that it isn't worth watching because there are some affecting as well as strong moments among the heavy handedness like the Sergeant (Eli Wallach) and a French widow (Jeanne Moreau) in a bombed out country house, an episode featuring Peter Fonda and a stray mutt and a sequence about two German sisters (Elke Sommer, Senta Berger) living off Russians and Americans in the Berlin Zone. Foreman intercuts his stories with actual WWII newsreels. The large cast includes Albert Finney, George Peppard, Romy Schneider, Melina Mercouri, George Hamilton, Vince Edwards, Maurice Ronet and Michael Callan.

The Sony DVD from Great Britain is, for the most part, a nice clean anamorphic wide screen (2.35) transfer. However, there is an annoying vertical line in the print for a few minutes during the Wallach and Moreau segment.
11 commentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 15 December 2012
i ordered the Victors dvd some months ago but only just got round to watching it. I first saw this film when i was a young boy...my dad had his own little home cinema and family and friends would gather round and watch epics like Lawrence of Arabia projected onto a big white screen at the end of the lounge. This was in the 60's . Anyway i never saw the film again until it was shown on TV .
I was dissapointed though cos the TV version had certain scenes missing...one of which i vividly remember cos being that young boy it left a big impression on me. It was a scene at the end of the film when George Hamilton was making love with Elka Somner. I just remember seeing my first naked movie scene be it all too brief, showing the beautiful rear of Elka as she walked to the bathroom . That scene aswell as the soldiers execution and the shooting of the little dog was left imprinted on my young mind.
As other reviewers have pointed out this dvd version is not the complete version and the wonderful scene of Elka's bottom is missing....However I still enjoyed watching it again ...i thought the acting was very good from all concerned and as far as i'm concerned its stood the test of time and remains one of the best 'war' films made .
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 18 July 2013
I watched this film once when I was a teenager. I am now 60 and it stayed with me all these years. A film that staggers by its clear anti-war message; its realism, and its sense that war is futile; winners and losers are alike made into beasts. Like many american war films it lacks subtlety, but it touches a chord when set beside the glorification of war that is the usual output of the US film industry.
Would like to make it compulsory viewing in all schools, but I guess it would seem very dated to kids these days!
It concerns a group of US Soldiers in Europe, particularly the idealistic one who wants to meet a Russian and find out the truth about their allies. He does ,of course, meet a Russian in the end.
Buy it but don't expect to feel a rosy glow at the end of it.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
When I first viewed this film I was struck by the willingness of the superstars of cinema to bury their egos for the sake of the huge message of this piece. They acted as a team in this film-of-many-scenes and the result accused the warmongers of callous, mechanistic disregard of human life - particularly of the protagonists in each scene. Just wait for the sickening scene in which a deserter is marched out of the chateau, into a snow-clad field, tied to a stake and shot; all to the strains of 'Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas' sung by Sinatra, telling us that that atrocity was committed on Christmas Day, 1944. The B&W photography helped to convey the ugliness of the situation perfectly.The Victors [DVD] [1963]
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on 12 December 2014
I always remembered George Peppard
and George Hamilton playing together
in Vincente Minnelli's "Home from the Hill".
So I was looking forward to see them together
in "The Victors", a film I liked when I first
saw it many years ago. But it is only now,
watching it again, that I really savoured every
aspect of Carl Foreman's screenplay and directing
and the excellent performance of the whole crew.
Eli Wallach as the tired, honest staff sergeant,
Jeanne Moreau, the delicate intellectual french
woman who finishes the night in his bed , because
she is afraid of the falling bombs... Melina Mercouri
as a black-market dealer in an off-limit bar who
becomes the mistress of George Peppard and curses
him when he refuses to desert... Very young Peter
Fonda and his poor puppy...(There is a touching
puppy-story in many war-films, but rarely as tragic as
this!) The vicious exchanges between two famous German
actresses, Elke Sommer and Senta Berger, representing the
downfall of Germany and humiliation of German women a year after the end
of the war...The distorted smile of actor Maurice Ronet,( playing
an officer of the Free French forces) while committing a
war-crime against German soldiers who want to surrender...

The storyline, the idea to include period newsreel documents,
the beautifully filmed scene of the "execution of Private Slovik " in a desert-like,
immaculate white snow field, to the sound of sweet Christmas music:
everything is there to make a very good war film (albeit not
really a pure combat-film). I'm glad I watched it again.

Five stars.

Elisheva Guggenheim-Mohosh, Geneva, Switzerland
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 15 November 2011
A great movie finally on DVD. Have looked for this movie for a long time because it does not seem to be shown on TV. Fabulous cast with high standard of acting and interesting story line. Interesting mix of actors from the USA and Europe. Romy Schneider, Jeanne Moreau and Melina Mercouri are just brilliant in the supporting roles. The ending comes unexpectedly quick, but definitely a DVD I would highly recommend.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 10 October 2013
A very thoughtful war movie with a fine cast. The climax remains valid while the film disturbs as it entertains. A movie not to make you gung ho. Which must be a good thing.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
     
 
Customers who viewed this item also viewed


Play Dirty [DVD]
Play Dirty [DVD] by Michael Caine (DVD - 2014)
£3.99
 
     

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.