Victory (1981)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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John Huston directed this exciting World War II action film, which culminates in a rousing soccer game. In a German prisoner of war camp, Major Karl von Steiner (Max Von Sydow), the camp commander, once a member of the German national soccer team, decides to put together a soccer match between a team of Allied prisoners, led by Captain John Colby (Michael Caine), a former English international soccer player. The game is to be played in Colombes Stadium in Paris and exploited for maximum propaganda effect by the Nazi publicity machine. Robert Hatch (Sylvester Stallone) is enlisted to assist the Allied prisoners to train for the event. But, in fact, the Allies are planning a risky escape during the soccer match. Famed Brazilian soccer great Pele makes an appearance in the film, along with Bobby Moore, the captain of Britain's 1966 World Cup champions, and Argentine soccer star Osvaldo Ardiles. ~ Paul Brenner, Rovi
PG (adult situations/language, violence)
Action & Adventure , Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
Paramount Pictures

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Sylvester Stallone
as Capt. Robert Hatch
Michael Caine
as Capt. John Colby
Max von Sydow
as Major Karl von Steiner
as Luis Fernandez
Bobby Moore
as Terry Brady
Paul Van Himst
as Michel Fileu
Osvaldo Ardiles
as Carlos Rey
Kazimierz Deyna
as Paul Wolchek
Hallvar Thorensen
as Gunnar Hilsson
Mike Summerbee
as Sid Harmor
Co Prins
as Pieter Van Beck
Russell Osman
as Doug Clure
John Wark
as Arthur Hayes
Soren Linsted
as Erik Borge
Kevin O'Calloghan
as Tony Lewis
Gary Waldhorn
as Coach Mueller
George Mikell
as Kommandant
Laurie Sivell
as Goalie
Robin Turner
as Player
Jurgen Andersen
as Propaganda Civilian
David Shawyer
as Strauss
Werner Roth
as Team Captain Baumann
as Andre
Benoît Ferreux
as Jean Paul
Jack Lenoir
as Georges
Zoltan Gera
as Viktor
Julian Curry
as Shurlock
Clive Merrison
as The Forger
Jack Kendrick
as Williams
Daniel Massey
as Col. Waldron
Anton Diffring
as Chief Commentator
Capacci Eolo
as Italian
Michel Drhey
as French
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Critic Reviews for Victory

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (3)

Unsatisfactory both for fans of star-studded prison escape dramas and for football fans hoping to see cunningly devised tactics from Pele and his squad of internationals.

Full Review… | August 13, 2010
Time Out
Top Critic

The form of the film is conventional, but the manner in which it has been executed is not.

Full Review… | August 13, 2010
New York Times
Top Critic

A frankly oldfashioned World War II morality play, hinging on soccer as a civilized metaphor for the game of War.

Full Review… | August 13, 2010
Top Critic

Huston, showing admirable range in his old age, creates enough on-field magic and nostalgia for the beatiful game as an idyll of now-extinct sportsmanship.

Full Review… | August 13, 2010
Empire Magazine

A cracking good story and some of the best football action committed to celluloid have made this a Bank Holiday classic.

Full Review… | August 13, 2010

Alternately hokey and inspiring.

Full Review… | August 13, 2010
TV Guide

Audience Reviews for Victory


Film about Allied prisoners of war who are interned in a German prison camp during World War II and accept the chalenge of a soccer game facing the German national squad. The film was directed by John Huston and stars Michael Caine, Sylvester Stallone and Max von Sydow. The film received great attention upon its theatrical release, as it also starred football superstars Bobby Moore, Osvaldo Ardiles, Kazimierz Deyna, Paul Van Himst and Pelé. Numerous Ipswich Town F.C. players were also in the film, including John Wark, Russell Osman, Laurie Sivell, Robin Turner and Kevin O'Callaghan. Further Ipswich Town players stood in for actors in the football scenes - Kevin Beattie for Michael Caine, and Paul Cooper for Sylvester Stallone.Good fun in this movie, specially for soccer lovers(as myself).Despite the poor theatrical performances by the soccer players, the final result is good and interesting.

Andre Tavares Simoni
Andre Tavares Simoni

Super Reviewer


Imagine the brilliance of combining The Great Escape with football. If The Great Escape didn't have you crying manly tears of true awesomeness into a nice cup of tea then this surely will. The use of real actors and footballing professionals really does give the film a more realistic edge than many sporting films. Well at least during the games and training. Not just for football fans, who may actually be too picky and disgruntled of Stallone being the lead. Uplifting, salute worthy and just a bit of fun. Sydow is also brilliant as a nice German officer, which I didn't get since we all know that Germans in war films are evil.

Luke Baldock
Luke Baldock

Super Reviewer


Such a cheesy premise that you have to give it some credit for daring.

Tsubaki Sanjuro
Tsubaki Sanjuro

Super Reviewer

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