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How I Won the War (1967)

aka How I Won the War

Directed By: 
Written By: 
Details: 109 mins · English

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Plot:

How I Won the War is a black comedy film directed and produced by Richard Lester, released in 1967, based on a novel of the same name by Patrick Ryan. The film stars Michael Crawford as bungling British Army Officer Lieutenant Earnest Goodbody, with John Lennon (in his only non-musical role, as Musketeer Gripweed), Jack MacGowran (Musketeer Juniper), Roy Kinnear (Musketeer Clapper) and Lee Montague (Sergeant Transom) as soldiers under his command. The film uses an inconsistent variety of styles—vignette, straight–to–camera, and, extensively, parody of the war film genre, docu-drama, and popular war literature—to tell the story of 3rd Troop, the 4th Musketeers (a fictional regiment reminiscent of the Royal Fusiliers) and their misadventures in the Second World War. This is told in the comic/absurdist vein throughout, a central plot being the setting-up of an “Advanced Area Cricket Pitch” behind enemy lines in Tunisia, but it is all broadly based on the Allied landings in North Africa in 1942 to the crossing of the last intact bridge on the Rhine at Remagen in 1945. The film itself has never been critically well received.

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