That well known family film, The Dirty Dozen

Discussion in 'Books, Films, TV, Radio' started by Grey Area, Jul 22, 2013.

  1. Grey Area

    Grey Area Junior Member

    This may be a sign of age, but I cannot believe that Channel 5 in the UK is showing The Dirty Dozen at 1pm next Saturday afternoon.

    On one level I shudder to think how much they will have to butcher a great film in order to make it showable to an all-age audience. On another level, a part of me is shocked that such a brutal and amoral movie is being shown in daylight hours.

    As it happens, I first saw the film aged 13 when the BBC premiered it at Christmas 1977 (uncut, as far as I recall) and my dad found it much more disturbing than I did. I'm also aware that films that were once thought deeply shocking are now considered tame.

    But seriously: The Dirty Dozen!

    Would anyone care to join me in guessing just how much of this film they will have to cut? Bearing in mind that this is Channel 5, whose last showing of Operation Daybreak (at a Saturday teatime) cut out all uses of the word "Christ!" and would not allow us to see the young girl finding blood on the handlebars of her bike (God knows what they did with the interrogation scenes, I'd given up by then).

    As a starter, I think they will have to lose:
    - the initial hanging
    - Major Reisman's first encounter with Franko (verbal and physical)
    - Maggot's use of the N-word (So "Any questions?" will appear to be followed by a completely spontaneous brawl)
    - The delivery of a truckload of prostitutes (Unless parents are meant to persuade their kids that they've really just come over for a dance)
    - Maggot cold-bloodedly stabbing a woman in the stomach
    - All the bloody bullet wounds in the final battle
    - The Dozen emptying bags of grenades, followed by petrol, down the ventilation shafts onto a cellar full of screaming people (So Jefferson will appear to blow up an entire chateau with about six hand grenades) ...

    I don't think I can bring myself to watch a family-friendly version, but would be interested to hear what was left intact!
  2. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    I saw worse on Sky News a month ago ;)
  3. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

    So what you moaning about then ?
    When it first came out it was an 'X' wasn't it?
    dbf likes this.
  4. Drew5233

    Drew5233 #FuturePilot 1940 Obsessive

    I take it back - The news tonight is worse than watching The Dirty Dozen - I feel so sick I'm off to bed.
    4jonboy likes this.
  5. Dave55

    Dave55 Atlanta, USA

    My favorite scene.

    My dad hated this movie because he didn't like to see American soldiers protrayed as 'sloppy misfits' but even he liked Pinkley's, "Neeeeever heard of it" line. :)
  6. A-58

    A-58 Not so senior Member

    Yeah my dad felt the same way about "The Devil's Brigade" and "Kelly's Heroes" as well. Of course I thought those movies were "way cool" being about 10 or so when they came out.
  7. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Old Hickory Recon

    Brutal and amoral.

    I cannot tell if the OP is being facetious or not.

    We're talking about a war movie, right? I would think that those are two words that pretty much summarize war. Granted, The Dirty Dozen is an outlandish, made-up story, but it is still intended to somewhat portray warfare in the 1940s. It is shown in its entirety quite regularly in the US at all hours of the day. I loved it as a child. Not so much now.
    dbf and von Poop like this.
  8. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Dirty Dozen ?

    Appalling, vulgar, sadistic, obscene, totally unconnected to the war that I knew ................... yes, all of these and probably the one film that the late Michael Winner would like to have made.

    Despite all this it had some epic and hilarious moments and if it's on, I'll watch it.

    Sorry !

    dbf likes this.
  9. dbf

    dbf Moderatrix MOD

    It is 'cartoonish', like much of the genre too unbelievable to be taken seriously.

    I watched it when I was young - with my parents. Probably after the watershed.
    I already had my father's stories, some almost unbelievable, as a comparison.
    My parents could've switched it off, or sent me to bed with the usual explanation 'too adult for you'. They didn't.
    The bits I couldn't comprehend went very much over my head. [Lee Marvin's character in the musical Paint your Wagon certainly raised more of a torturous parent-child discussion than this film did.]

    I am a (mainly) balanced person despite this exposure to violence etc on screen, or in books, or classic plays even.

    The watershed is frankly defunct, a nanny leftover. Nowadays you can download anything off the net and watch it any time you want, see real life events in full detail before it catches sight of the censors at the News. We are no longer spoon-fed by the clock even by Auntie thanks to iplayer's a la carte menu.

    Responsibility remains still with the parent to use the on/off button, for now.

    1pm on a Saturday? Kids should be out climbing trees, making daisy chains, or doing something similarly dangerous to their health and safety.
  10. Dave55

    Dave55 Atlanta, USA

    That's a perfect description

    It was a brutal one though. The Rat Patrol was a cartoon where nobody got hurt :)
  11. Staffsyeoman

    Staffsyeoman Member

    You just have to place it in context with the other 'anti-establishment' or even 'counter-culture' war films of the late 60s era, where WW2 was simply a structure on which to hang the script, such as 'Kelly's Heroes' 'How I Won The War' and so on; and of course the biggest cypher of all, M*A*S*H - Korea for Vietnam.

    But in terms of violence: those of us old enough and farty enough will recall the terrible fuss over the violence and venality of 'The Sweeney' - and now they show it on Sunday afternoons. Must admit, leaping forwards, I never thought 'Robocop' would make it to TV, but it did - uncut...
  12. Bernard85

    Bernard85 WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    good day grey area, well known film the dirty dozen,so much fuss,its was only a film.its like t.v.if you don't like the show you change station.have a good day.regards bernard85
    dbf likes this.

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