The Guns of Navarone - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Guns of Navarone Reviews

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January 30, 2017
viewed on 26/7/04 (Mon)

It is a well-made adventure film. But somehow, I feel that something is still not quite in place. Maybe it aims to be an action-packed popcorn movie. There are truly some thrilling moments and they are designed to make you sit at the edge of your seat. I think I am not happy with the human drama they forcedly imposed.

But then again I am asking for too much. It is afterall entertaining and a favourite film to many people, including some royalties or so the making-of documentary claims.

Rating: B+
January 3, 2017
This is when ORIGINAL movies were real movies with real stories, actors, directors, and values and everyone was on the same page - good and evil were clearly defined. They - money mongering corporate cretins - simply do not make this type of quality film, have been cutting corners bastardizing originals with appalling remakes using special effects as a poor replacement for quality, and haven't made one in the last 3 decades. To miss this classic WWII film is to miss the core standard of quality that defines what movie making is supposed to be all about all and the basis for this review.
October 4, 2016
Beautifully paced, this 156-minute WWII action adventure classic allows enough time for character development, plot complications (including the requisite double-cross by a member of the outfit) and several exciting set-pieces.
May 7, 2016
A stirring action film set in the key days of WW12 & the British Attempt to destroy & disable the Germans Unstoppable Guns on Navarone Island in Greece.

The strength of the film lies in the unusual team that take on this seemingly impossible mission & how they get out of each predicament they find themselves in.

Both Gregory Peck & Anthony Quinn steal the show in their roles & this film works in its fast pace & genuinely entertaining story against the odds. Although a fictional film it feels like it could have happened & the film has such a sense of realism.
April 20, 2016
Exceptional Effects for a movie from the 60's, the Guns of Navarone leads great acting by David Niven, Gregory Peck, and anthony Quinn, with a handful of comedic lines and a strong plot. There will be entertainment leaving you at the edge of your seat. Great film
½ March 19, 2016
Really enjoyed this one. Very slow-moving, but a great story and terrific acting. Peck was awesome.
½ February 20, 2016
You just can't beat a good "impossible mission that involves beating the Nazi's" kind of movie. I loved "Where Eagles Dare," and this film was right up that alley, partly because it's based on a book by the same author of the aforementioned film. This film has got a few baffling issues, but overall it's highly entertaining, well paced, has some great character building, and it contained some surprisingly insightful commentary on philosophy of war that was more welcome then that sort of thing usually is in this kind of war film. A perfectly pleasing motion picture overall.
½ February 16, 2016
A great war classic.
½ November 29, 2015
In 1943, the Axis powers plan an assault on the island of Keros - where 2,000 British soldiers are marooned - to bully neutral Turkey into joining them with a display of their military strength. Rescue by the Royal Navy is prevented by two massive radar-directed superguns on the nearby island of Navarone. When aerial bombing efforts fail, Allied Intelligence gathers a team of commandos to infiltrate Navarone and destroy the guns. Led by Major Roy Franklin (Anthony Quayle), the team is composed of Captain Keith Mallory (Gregory Peck), a renowned spy and mountaineer; Colonel Andrea Stavrou (Anthony Quinn) from the defeated Greek army; Franklin's best friend Corporal Miller (David Niven), an explosives expert and former chemistry teacher; Greco-American Spyros Pappadimos (James Darren), a native of Navarone; and "Butcher" Brown (Stanley Baker), an engineer and expert knife fighter. Disguised as Greek fishermen on a decrepit boat, they sail across the Aegean Sea. During the voyage Mallory confides to Franklin that Stavrou had sworn to kill him after the war, because Mallory was inadvertently responsible for the deaths of Stavrou's wife and children. The team shipwreck on the Greek coast during a storm; Mallory leads the climb up the cliff, but Franklin badly injures his leg; the injury later becomes infected with gangrene. While taking shelter in the mountains, Mallory stops Franklin from committing suicide and then lies to him: that their mission has been cancelled and that a major naval attack will be mounted on the Navarone coast, away from the gun emplacements. They rendezvous with local resistance fighters: Spyros' sister Maria (Irene Papas) and her friend Anna (Gia Scala), who was once captured and tortured by the Germans before escaping - the trauma rendering her mute. The mission is continually dogged by German soldiers, and the group is eventually captured in the town of Mandrakos while trying to find a doctor for Franklin. Stavrou pretends to grovel as they're being interrogated, which distracts the Germans enough for the group to overpower their captors. They escape in German uniform but leave Franklin behind to receive medical attention. In due course, Franklin is injected with scopolamine and gives up Mallory's disinformation, as Mallory had hoped: the fort is emptied in preparation for the supposed attack. Upon infiltrating Navarone, however, Miller discovers most of his explosives have been sabotaged and deduces that Anna is the culprit; she is forced to confess that she is not mute after all, and that the Germans recruited her as an informer in exchange for her release. Mallory reluctantly prepares to execute Anna as punishment, but Maria shoots her instead. The team splits up: Mallory and Miller go for the guns, Stavrou and Spyros create distractions in town, while Maria and Brown steal a boat for their escape. Will Mallory and Miller manage to destroy the guns with the germans on their tail?

"Guns Of Navarone" is a classic World War II ensemble movie based on Alistair MacLean's 1957 novel "The Guns of Navarone", which was inspired by the Battle of Leros during the Dodecanese Campaign of World War II. It was nominated for several Oscars and part of a cycle of big-budget World War II adventures that included "The Bridge on the River Kwai" (1957), "The Longest Day" (1962) and "The Great Escape" (1963). Compared to the other mentioned movies, I must confess that I think that "Guns Of Navarone" is quite "boring" and never really sparks despite very strong performances from all involved. Personally I think that Richard Harris 5 minute dialogue in the beginning of the film is one of the best parts of the movie. Yes, we have lavish sets, beautiful environments, solid dialogue, strong performances as said, good character development, internal conflicts, subplots, suspense at times and the germans actually speak german. But, I couldn´t help wonder why you spend so much time on the shipwreck scene the team almost don´t survive from and the same goes for the climbing of the cliff as this is not made in a very suspenseful way in my opinion. I felt that the movie dragged and the production failed to keep my full attention at least. It just didn´t tickle my fancy as much as other World War II movies from the same era.
Paris S.
Super Reviewer
½ October 9, 2015
One of the classic Columbia pictures. Much like Bridge on the River Kwai, Guns on the Navarone is about some tough guys blowing up a big thing. While Kwai focuses on the obsessive British pride surrounding the construction of the bridge, Navarone is more a straightforward heist movie with a broader and badder cast of characters. A great film with a great big climax, but I find some useless baggage just as the film enters its second half,, which serves almost exclusively to remind us that Gregory Peck is a soldier and a decision maker, which is a conclusion the film leads us to early on anyway.
½ September 24, 2015
Classic war film documenting assault on Navarone in a virtual suicide mission in WWII by a diverse collection of individuals. A premise that would be exploited many times over in later years. Won Oscar for Best Special Effects, which are clearly better than its contemporaries in that department. Director J Lee Thompson may be best remembered, however, for his signature work with Charles Bronson in the latter stages of both men's careers.
August 27, 2015
Great WWII movie with exciting lengthy and never boring story showing the soldiers strength and Greek revolutionary determination. Gregory Peck great performance. Amazing acting by David Niven. Again Irene Papas and Anothny Quinn stunning duet. Adding to the brilliant act flavor are Anthony Quayle and Stanley Baker. Unbelievable art directing, costume design and special effects of that time (1961).
½ July 26, 2015
There's a lot to love about The Guns of Navarone. The banter/aggression between Gregory Peck and David Niven. The always classic overacting you get from the British in the 60's. Some of the best comedic deaths from grenades, or, being vaguely near grenades, that you will ever see. But more than that, a great script; a simple, well-executed idea and genuine tension and twists and turns. A brilliant war film.
May 13, 2015
One of the best WWII movies I've ever seen. Old fashioned heroism.
April 22, 2015
Great performances from Gregory Peck, David Niven, and Gia Scala. Solid war movie with great sound design and directing
½ March 25, 2015
Una película tan grande como los cañones del título. Anthony Quayle lidera a un equipo suicida conformado por un hombre práctico e inteligente (Gregory Peck) experto en explosivos (David Niven), un sanguinario y joven soldado (James Darren), dos griegos con deseos de venganza (Anthony Quinn e Irene Papas) y un hombre apodado el "carnicero de Barcelona" para acabar con unos cañones alemanes en plena Segunda Guerra Mundial. Mucha acción, buenas actuaciones, química y sólida dirección.
February 21, 2015
A perfect snowy Saturday afternoon movie - and one of my favorite action films. Perfect cast and perfect locations.
½ November 23, 2014
***Due to the recent RT changes that have basically ruined my past reviews, I am mostly only giving a rating rather than a full review.***
November 22, 2014
"The Guns of Navarone" places a group of hard-boiled Allied saboteurs into scenarios that require them to put their civilian instincts for compassion aside for the sake of the mission. Whole other, milder, happier lives seem implicit in these characters' sad glances and careful movements, and Gregory Peck and Anthony Quayle in particular convey with great subtlety that their characters would rather be comfortably behind desks-not to preserve their own safety, which they put unhesitatingly at risk, but to prevent them from having to make difficult decisions about the lives of other members of their top-secret team. The casting of well-known, likable actors such as David Niven, Gregory Peck, and Anthony Quinn is essential for the impact of the story's cloak-and-dagger twists, in which agonizing personal decisions and private anxieties are brought to the fore. The Nazis are of course fearful villains, especially in a tense interrogation scene, and their heavy gun emplacement targeted for sabotage makes for a great set piece backdrop, but in a departure from other war films of the period these elements are almost a sideshow here. At the heart of the film instead are the dynamics within the Allied infiltration team itself, and the team's efforts to navigate, in good faith, the situations that require them to regard as expendable anyone who threatens the success of the mission-including injured or untrustworthy members of their own team. These personalized stakes make "Navarone" among the most tense and uncompromising war movies I've seen.
August 23, 2014
The godfather of set-pieces in movies! Every look back at The Guns of N throws up some interesting moments, especially the ones with Quinn,arguably the greatest character actor ever to have graced the motion pictures, in it.
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