Watch Cast a Giant Shadow
- 2 hr 26 min
Cast a Giant Shadow is a 1966 film directed by Melville Shavelson and starring Kirk Douglas, John Wayne, Senta Berger, Frank Sinatra, Yul Brynner and Angie Dickinson. The movie is a biographical war film based on the life of Colonel David "Mickey" Marcus, an American military officer who served in the Israeli army during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War.
The story begins with the United Nations' decision to partition Palestine into Jewish and Arab states. Mickey Marcus (Douglas), a veteran of World War II, is appointed by the Jewish Agency to help organize the fledgling Israeli Defense Forces. Marcus is given the rank of lieutenant colonel and is tasked with building an army from scratch. He recruits Jewish and non-Jewish volunteers from all over the world, including the United States, Canada and Europe. Among his recruits are young Israelis who have never held a gun before.
As Marcus trains his troops, he faces many challenges. The Arab forces, led by the formidable General Safwat (Brynner), are much larger and better equipped than the Israeli army. Marcus must find a way to counter their superior firepower and tactics. His efforts are complicated by the fact that his own command is divided by conflicting interests and egos. The seasoned Israeli generals are suspicious of Marcus, a brash American who speaks his mind and has little respect for tradition. They view him as an outsider who doesn't understand their culture and history.
Despite these obstacles, Marcus perseveres. He develops new tactics and strategies that take advantage of Israel's natural terrain and the courage of its soldiers. He leads his troops into battle and earns their respect and loyalty. Along the way, he meets and falls in love with a beautiful Israeli woman named Emma (Berger) who is also a member of the resistance.
The film is notable for its star-studded cast, which includes several Hollywood legends. Kirk Douglas is perfectly cast as the charismatic and tough-minded Mickey Marcus, a man who is willing to risk everything for a cause he believes in. John Wayne makes a memorable cameo as General Mike Randolph, an American officer who plays a key role in the narrative. Frank Sinatra gives a solid performance as Vince Talmadge, an American smuggler who helps the Israeli cause.
The film is also notable for its depiction of Israel and the Arab-Israeli conflict. The filmmakers go to great lengths to portray Israel as a brave and noble nation fighting for its survival against overwhelming odds. The Arab forces are shown as ruthless and cruel, willing to commit atrocities against innocent civilians. While this depiction is undoubtedly biased and simplistic, it reflects the prevailing attitudes of the time and gives the film a sense of urgency and passion.
The film's action scenes are well-staged and exciting. The battle scenes, in particular, are impressive, with the Israeli soldiers showing incredible bravery and resourcefulness in the face of overwhelming odds. The film's score, composed by Elmer Bernstein, is also noteworthy, adding to the film's emotional impact and sense of drama.
Overall, Cast a Giant Shadow is an entertaining and engaging film that tells an important story. While it may be inconsistent and somewhat simplistic in its portrayal of the conflict, it nevertheless offers a powerful and moving tribute to the courage and determination of the Israeli people. It is a film that deserves to be remembered as an important historical document and a testament to the human spirit.
Cast a Giant Shadow is a 1966 war movie with a runtime of 2 hours and 26 minutes. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.3.