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Dirty Dozen


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Product Details

  • Actors: Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine, Charles Bronson, John Cassavetes, Telly Savalas
  • Directors: Robert Aldrich
  • Writers: E.M. Nathanson, Lukas Heller, Nunnally Johnson
  • Producers: Kenneth Hyman, Raymond Anzarut
  • Format: Special Edition, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English, French, German
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Warner
  • VHS Release Date: Nov. 1 2001
  • Run Time: 150 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 079074967X
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #13,689 in Video (See Top 100 in Video)

Product Description

Amazon.ca

A model for dozens of action films to follow, this box-office hit from 1967 refined a die-hard formula that has become overly familiar, but it's rarely been handled better than it was in this action-packed World War II thriller. Lee Marvin is perfectly cast as a down-but-not-out army major who is offered a shot at personal and professional redemption. If he can successfully train and discipline a squad of army rejects, misfits, killers, prisoners, and psychopaths into a first-rate unit of specialized soldiers, they'll earn a second chance to make up for their woeful misdeeds. Of course, there's a catch: to obtain their pardons, Marvin's band of badmen must agree to a suicide mission that will parachute them into the danger zone of Nazi-occupied France. It's a hazardous path to glory, but the men have no other choice to accept and regain their lost honor. What makes The Dirty Dozen special is its phenomenal cast including Charles Bronson, Donald Sutherland, Telly Savalas, George Kennedy, Ernest Borgnine, John Cassavetes, Richard Jaeckel, Jim Brown, Clint Walker, Trini Lopez, Robert Ryan, and others. Cassavetes is the Oscar- nominated standout as one of Marvin's most rebellious yet heroic men, but it's the whole ensemble--combined with the hard-as-nails direction of Robert Aldrich--that makes this such a high-velocity crowd pleaser. The script by Nunnally Johnson and Lukas Heller (from the novel by E.M. Nathanson) is strong enough to support the all-star lineup with ample humor and military grit, so if you're in need of a mainline jolt of testosterone, The Dirty Dozen is the movie for you. The DVD extras are also a kick in the pants, including a promotional featurette showing Marvin and his stylishly macho costars enjoying some male bonding in the mod London bistros of the 1960s. (You almost expect Austin Powers to come speeding around the nearest corner, making it a dirty baker's dozen! Yeah, baby, yeah!) --Jeff Shannon

Special Features

This special edition includes the behind-the-scenes documentary Operation Dirty Dozen, the original theatrical trailer, and an all-new introduction by Ernest Borgnine.

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth on Aug. 25 2000
Format: VHS Tape
Recently, some meathead friend of a friend was perusing my video collection and asked me with a sneer on his face, "What kind of girl owns The Dirty Dozen?"
Can I help it if this chick has taste?
Of course I completely understand the assumption that this is a guy's movie. After all, the only females to feature in the film are whores. While women played an important role in the WWII victory, they were more in the factories than on the front lines. I refrain from saying only men enjoy watching stuff get blown up, but I will venture to say that if my father had had sons, he might have introduced them to this film genre rather than his daughters.
But this is a quality film with enough substance for both genders to enjoy. After all, this is a film about redemption. Lee Marvin must struggle to make worthy soldiers out of men who would steal, rape, and murder. The importance of a meaningful death is the motivation behind his troop's transformation.
The movie is a little slow, but the script is good and the action alternates between wildly humorous and intensely suspenseful. Furthermore, this film is full of amazing moments of character development. Charles Bronsen's failed attempt at a word-association exercise. Telly Savalas's portrayal of chilling insanity. Donald Sutherland as the idiot "general" inspecting the troops. Jim Brown, who does not care to fight the white man's war but can not suppress his own heroic nature. And John Cassavantes as the tricky, irrepressible Victor Franco, the guy we love to hate. Or is that hate to love?
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Format: DVD
Are you looking for a movie with a great plot, perfectly timed action, and superb acting and directing? Look no further. This film, set in World War II, chronicles the covert operations of a group of military convicts, and their non-convict leader behind enemy lines. It is their task to sneak in and assassinate a large group of key German officials.
The movie starts with the commander (played by Lee Marvin, in arguably his greatest role) picking out some of the best, but also some of the most expendable men in the Army. He goes to the prison and gives them a deal. If they will fight, their sentences will be dismissed and they will be free. Most of these men are awaiting execution, while others have long prison terms. His first goal is to make them ready for combat, which proves to be no easy task, as these guys, who seemingly have nothing to lose, give him a hard time. But eventually, under his command, he creates an elite team of fighters. Now, the next objective is to learn the layout of the area they are to infiltrate, which is a huge French chateau, then sneak in and attack. But will they make it? Of course I will not tell you, you will need to see the movie yourself. But what I will tell you is that this is one of those films with an all star cast and loads of edge-of-your-seat action!!! Besides Lee Marvin, you have Telly Savalas, football great Jim Brown, the late VERY great Charles Bronson, Donald Sutherland ( Sutherland fans will also love the movie Kelly's Hero's), Ernest Borgnine, Clint Walker ( who also starred in the film Night Of The Grizzly), George Kennedy (who co-starred in the hilarious Naked Gun films), and a host of others too numerous to mention. Besides Action, the film incorporates a delicious amount of drama, suspense, comedy (the war games part will give you a good laugh), Horror (when Telly Savalas goes off the deep end), and intrigue.
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By Westley on Feb. 21 2004
Format: DVD
"The Dirty Dozen" became one of the biggest hits of 1967, placing behind only "The Graduate," "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner," and "Bonnie and Clyde." Its success was well-deserved and unsurprising given how enjoyable and stirring it is. Lee Marvin stars as a Major during WWII who is disliked by many of his superiors. He's assigned to lead a suicide style mission behind Nazi enemy lines. He's disinclined to do so, particularly after he meets his "troop" comprised of a dozen murderers and other criminals - the titular "dirty dozen." Despite his misgivings, Marvin eventually agrees to train and lead this rag-tag group, as a shot of redemption for all concerned.
The story is constructed brilliantly, beginning with an introduction to the assignment and the dirty dozen, detailing their training, showing their first "mock" operation, and climaxing with their final mission. The cast is a superior mix of established stars and then-newcomers, including Ernest Borgnine, George Kennedy, Charles Bronson, Trini Lopez, Jim Brown, Clint Walker, Telly Savalas, and Donald Sutherland. Special cudos go to Lee Marvin, who is terrific as the renegade Major, and John Cassavetes as the rebellious Franco; Cassavetes received his first Oscar nomination for the role (he later received one for writing and one for directing his own films).
Director Robert Aldrich does his best-ever work (he was nominated for best director by the Director's Guild of America), building on such earlier hits as "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?" and "Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte." His skillful direction manages to make us care deeply and root for a collection of violent offenders. Overall, "The Dirty Dozen" is a first-rate action movie - one of the most enjoyable ever made.
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