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The Longest Day

The Longest Day (1962)

October. 04,1962
| Drama Action War

The retelling of June 6, 1944, from the perspectives of the Germans, US, British, Canadians, and the Free French. Marshall Erwin Rommel, touring the defenses being established as part of the Reich's Atlantic Wall, notes to his officers that when the Allied invasion comes they must be stopped on the beach. "For the Allies as well as the Germans, it will be the longest day"


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Good movie but grossly overrated


Excellent, Without a doubt!!


This story has more twists and turns than a second-rate soap opera.

Neive Bellamy

Excellent and certainly provocative... If nothing else, the film is a real conversation starter.


Sound: Great sound effects editing. I did not like the way the theme song got used in the score, very weak, not developed enough. 70/100 Technical: Well done but with some minor problems, like bad background extra acting and some of the takes with the German actors were tinged with some bilingual confusion. 70/100 Narrative: Standard narrative of the first 24 hours of D-Day from many points of view; military, civilian, ally, enemy, fighting men, and support units. 90/100 Acting/Character: Excellent use of an ensemble cast. We feel for the soldiers and their comrades. 90/100 Did I like it: Yes, all of the merging story lines mixed with the humor and anti-war tone made it very enjoyable. 100/100 Artistic merit: I compare this film to Saving Private Ryan in subject and scale. Very few war films portray the different points of view in a battle. 80/100 Total score 83.3/100


The D-Day invasion was a major event in the history of the world. Eisenhower decided that it was time to join the allies and invade via the beaches at Normandy. This movie could have beens stronger if it had been a little more concise and taken on a smaller piece of the story. It tries to get at virtually every aspect of the invasion from the points of view of five different entities. Granted, it has some incredible performances (and some sort of dull ones), but, again, there were just too many stories to keep track of; hence, most of them are just a bit undernourished. Don't get me wrong. It's a terrific film at time, and they do a good job of presenting that story. The movie is based on a very extensive novel by Cornelius Ryan.


As the Germans waited in France for the inevitable invasion, the suspense on both sides of the channel was palpable. The British and Americans devised plans of great complexity, involving vast amounts of men and materiel. It was a guessing game where they would land and when. An element of surprise was achieved when the first allied forces appeared off Normandy--where they were not expected--on the tail of relentless rain, through fog banks over choppy waters.But the initial stages of the attack occurred during the previous night, when allied paratroopers descended over the French countryside. "The Longest Day" does a good job of showing the confusion and mishaps that resulted from the night invasion. And it provides a glimpse into the unintended and accidental nature of war. The effectiveness of the invasion was affected by red tape, egos, poor communications, bad planning and mistakes--just like all wars.Though the film contains some factual errors, it does a good job (for its time) of conveying the true nature of armed conflict, where lives are often lost or saved simply due to chance.A large all-star cast and thousands of extras make this film noteworthy. Four directors under the direction of Darryl F. Zanuck were used to achieve balance in the film by serving the American, British and French interests in the story.For a more graphic representation of that beach invasion, see Spielberg's "Saving Private Ryan". But "The Longest Day" is a fine film, especially for its time. The ending includes minimal moralizing and some good summarizing, but it feels like a sequel was envisioned. A television miniseries would certainly be welcomed if it could follow the stories of various participants on all sides of the conflict as this film does.


I hadn't got around to watching THE LONGEST DAY before now; I knew little about it, other than it featured an all-star cast and was about the D-Day landings. Having just watched it, I've been blown away by what I consider to be one of the most confident, assured, WW2 films I've ever seen.THE LONGEST DAY is to D-Day what TORA! TORA! TORA! is to the Pearl Harbour attack. It covers the build-up and events of the day in minute detail in such a way that it never feels slow or overlong; indeed, there's so much going on here that this lengthy production requires the viewer's attention throughout. No time for nodding off as you'll be lost otherwise! The all-star cast makes it a highly attractive proposition as a film, but really this movie would have worked just as well with an unknown cast, as it's so well written; exciting where it should be, tragic in places, and unexpectedly funny in others. Watching John Wayne, Robert Mitchum, and the rest of the familiar faces wading their way through one of the most important days in 20th century history is a sheer delight. Needless to say this blows Spielberg's mawkish SAVING PRIVATE RYAN clean out of the water.