- Actors: John Wayne, Robert Ryan, Richard Burton, Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchum
- Directors: Andrew Marton, Bernhard Wicki, Darryl F. Zanuck, Gerd Oswald, Ken Annakin
- Writers: Cornelius Ryan, David Pursall, Jack Seddon
- Format: PAL, Black & White
- Language: English, French, German
- Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
- Number of discs: 1
- Classification: PG
- Studio: Twentieth Century Fox
- DVD Release Date: 6 Oct. 2003
- Run Time: 171 minutes
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (388 customer reviews)
- ASIN: B0000DK4RJ
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,082 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
The Longest Day - Single Disc Edition  [DVD]
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John Wayne, Robert Mitchum and Henry Fonda star in this classic war drama centered around the Normandy Landings of 1944. Filmed as a docudrama, the story is told from the points of view of several high-ranking officials and follows the development and events of Tuesday 6th June 1944, the day which will be forever known as D-Day.
The Longest Day, producer Darryl F Zanuck's epic account of June 6, 1944, is Hollywood's definitive D-Day movie. More modern accounts such as Saving Private Ryan and the mini-series Band of Brothers are more vividly realistic, but Zanuck's production is the only one to attempt the daunting task of covering that fateful day from all perspectives. From the German high command and front line officers to the French Resistance and all the key Allied participants, the screenplay by Cornelius Ryan, based on his own authoritative book, is as factually accurate a depiction of events as possible. Zanuck picked three different directors to handle the German, French and Allied sequences respectively and the result should have been a grittily realistic semi-documentary work of unparalleled authenticity. That it is not is due to the unfortunate decision to populate the movie with an apparently endless parade of stars: John Wayne, Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchum, Sean Connery and Kenneth Moore to name a few all pop up from time to time; while Roddy McDowall and Richard Burton, on leave from the set of Cleopatra, also get cameos. The end result is an uneasy mix of verisimilitude and Hollywood star-power. Add to that the need for every character to provide almost endless explanatory exposition and the film falls a little flat for too much of its running time. The set-piece battles are still spectacular, however, and if the landings on Omaha beach lack the graphic gore of Private Ryan they nonetheless show the sheer scale and audacity of the invasion. Despite its top-heavy cast, The Longest Day is still the best D-Day movie ever made.
On the DVD: The black and white print is in excellent condition, as is the remixed Dolby 5.0. Made in 1969, the 50-minute supplementary documentary "D-Day Revisited" has producer Zanuck revisiting key locations in Normandy, chatting to the locals in rather stiff French and providing a personal narrative of the events of June 6, 1944 intercut with scenes from his film. The sight of the elderly Zanuck standing on Omaha Beach or beside the headstone of an unknown soldier is easily as poignant as the bookend scenes of Saving Private Ryan, but without the Spielbergian sentiment. --Mark Walker --This text refers to an alternate DVD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Based on Cornelius Ryan's celebrated book of the same title, "The Longest Day" is almost three hours long and has one of the largest all star casts every assembled (42 international stars according to the poster), albeit with big names like John Wayne, Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchem, Richard Burton, and Rod Steiger playing supporting roles because, to tell the truth, there is nothing else to play in this film. If you are telling the story of D-Day, no single figure is going to emerge as the star, which is the point (Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, played by an uncredited Henry Grace, has one scene). Sean Connery was about to become famous as James Bond in "Dr.Read more ›
‘The Longest Day’ is a vivid re-creation of the June 6, 1944 Allied invasion of France, which marked the beginning of the end of Nazi domination in Europe. Featuring a stellar international cast, and told from the perspectives of both sides, this fascinating look at one of history’s biggest battles ranks as one of Hollywood’s truly Great War films.
FILM FACT: Awards and Nominations: 1962 Academy Awards®: Won: Best Cinematography for Jean Bourgoin and Walter Wottitz. Won: Best Special Effects for Robert MacDonald and Jacques Maumont. Nominated: Best Art Direction for Ted Haworth, Léon Barsacq, Vincent Korda and Gabriel Béchir. Nominated: Best Editing for Samuel E. Beetley. Nominated: Best Picture.
Cast: Eddie Albert, Paul Anka, Arletty, Jean-Louis Barrault, Richard Beymer, Hans Christian Blech, Bourvil, Richard Burton, Wolfgang Büttner, Red Buttons, Pauline Carton, Sean Connery, Ray Danton, Irina Demick, Fred Dur, Fabian, Mel Ferrer, Henry Fonda, Steve Forrest, Gert Fröbe, Leo Genn, John Gregson, Paul Hartmann, Werner Hinz, Donald Houston, Jeffrey Hunter, Karl John, Curd Jürgens, Alexander Knox, Peter Lawford, Fernand Ledoux, Christian Marquand, Dewey Martin, Roddy McDowall, Michael Medwin, Sal Mineo, Robert Mitchum, Kenneth More, Richard Münch, Edmond O'Brien, Leslie Phillips, Wolfgang Preiss, Ron Randell, Madeleine Renaud, Georges Rivière, Norman Rossington, Robert Ryan, Tommy Sands, George Segal, Jean Servais, Rod Steiger, Richard Todd, Tom Tryon, Peter van Eyck, Robert Wagner, Richard Wattis, Stuart Whitman, Georges Wilson, John Wayne, Frank Finlay, Harry Fowler, William Hoehne Jr.Read more ›
The product I bought also includes Patton. This seems clearly directed to a US audience and portrays Patton as an obnoxious individual, but one who gets things done, despite the short-comings of Montgomery and the dumb Brits - much too simplistic. Worse yet, the portrait of General Omar Bradley is totally unconvincing and Karl Malden is mis-cast. The Patton battle scenes (with the exception of the aftermath of the Kasserine Pass) look either staged or as though they are of a battle fought in a bygone age; but then, since this movie was made we have had the terrifying reality of Band of Brothers and Saving Private Ryan to make comparisons.
I found Bridge too Far quite good, but the "Star cameos", Robert Redford and Edward Fox seemed rather obtrusive, while Dirk Bogarde and Sean Connery seemed to contribute less to pushing themselves and more to the narative.
In order of preference:
Longest Day 5 stars
Bridge too Far 3/4 stars
Patton 2 stars
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I went to the pictures with friends on a birthday treat in 1966
to see this film,still a stunner,but becoming a bit dated when
compared to modern day ww2 films like Fury.
I actually purchased this film because I am doing a research pack for a good friend's autistic grandson and this particular war film is ideal because it tells the story of D-Day... Read morePublished 15 days ago by Amazon Customer