Castle Keep

1969

Action / Comedy / Drama / Romance / War

0
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 38%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 50%
IMDb Rating 6.1 10 2825

Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
May 22, 2021 at 04:21 AM

Director

Cast

Peter Falk as Sgt. Rossi
Burt Lancaster as Maj. Abraham Falconer
Bruce Dern as Lt. Billy Byron Bix
Scott Wilson as Cpl. Clearboy
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
985.34 MB
1280*544
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
1 hr 47 min
P/S 2 / 12
1.79 GB
1920*816
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
1 hr 47 min
P/S 0 / 19

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Bunuel1976 7 / 10

CASTLE KEEP (Sydney Pollack, 1969) ***

I had been wanting to check this one out for over 20 years (it used to be available as a VHS rental at the local outlet but I never got around to it) but especially after reading up on the film on the internet since its 2004 DVD release(s) where its unusual "artiness" a'-la Alain Resnais' LAST YEAR IN MARIENBAD (1961) was played up. Now that I've watched CASTLE KEEP for myself, all I can say is that it's arguably the strangest mainstream war movie ever and decidedly not for all tastes!

The relatively large cast (for what turns out to be an introspective film) is uniformly excellent and is well up to the requirements of the brilliantly surreal, funny and literate script; Burt Lancaster, wearing an eye-patch throughout, has an unsympathetic role as the formidable leader of a group of misfit soldiers taking over a Belgian castle against unseen invading German troops. He is skillfully abetted by Peter Falk (as a soldier who abandons his post to indulge in his vocation as a baker), Jean-Pierre Aumont (as the "degenerate" owner of the titular castle), Patrick O'Neal (as a celebrated art historian all at sea on the battleground but well in his element surrounded by the castle's objets d' art), Scott Wilson (as a soldier who gets into quite a unique relationship – more on this later), Tony Bill (as the most spiritual of the men) and, the other side of the coin, Bruce Dern as a Bible-thumping conscientious objector who walks the Belgian rubbles with his ragged band of revivalist deserters-followers. The terrific cinematography of the awesome European locations – courtesy of Henri Decae – is complimented by a fine Michel Legrand score and, when they finally come, spectacular battle sequences.

But it's the odd, surreal touches – including Scott Wilson falling in love with a Volkswagen, the same car rising from the sea after it has been drowned by his envious companions and floating ashore all by itself, the moving sequence between Tony Bill and an unseen German soldier (subsequently needlessly shot by Peter Falk) where the latter teaches the former how to play the flute correctly, the unusually realistic talk of fornication, sexual organs, impotence, the ambiguous (perhaps ghostly) nature of the characters involved and the events being enacted, etc. – which really make this show stand out from the crowd of WWII spectaculars and stick in one's memory – not to mention endear it to its legion of fans (who have famously decried online its original abominable pan-and-scan DVD incarnation, forcing Sony to re-release it in the correct Widescreen aspect ratio a mere four months later). The theme of the relevance of art in times of war brings forth comparisons to John Frankenheimer's THE TRAIN (1964), also starring Burt Lancaster, whose third (and final) collaboration with director Sydney Pollack – after the previous year's THE SCALPHUNTERS and THE SWIMMER (where Pollack replaced original director Frank Perry but goes uncredited) – this proved to be…perhaps as a result of the critical beating the film received upon its original release!

Reviewed by merklekranz 6 / 10

Disjointed, dream like, dissappointing ...........

"Castle Keep" is a film looking to find an audience in all the wrong places. Wrapping a 1960s free sex and love anti-war message around a World War 2 suicide mission is like trying to shovel crap against the tide. Seriously surreal, this failed film is nevertheless not without interest, because of the cast. The movie more belongs on an art gallery wall than in a theater, because the photography is stunning, with each shot vivid and memorable. Unfortunately the same cannot be said for the film. Because it is so disjointed, the whole experience is somehow lacking in impact. By the time the bang bang ending appears on the screen, most audiences will be so bewildered by what has preceded it they will hardly be awake. - MERK

Reviewed by miran_kor 9 / 10

Unique film about war years ahead of its time!

Unusual (more realistic - and surrealistic - than in other films) point of view on horrors of war, good directing and a strong cast. I liked this film very much when I saw it about 25 years ago in the Cinématheque (long live Yugoslav and now Slovenian Kinoteka). Unfortunately, the copy wasn't as good as the film itself. There were some missing parts so I'd like to check out this one again.

What good movies Sydney Pollack made in his early days! I highly recommend his Slender Thread, The Scalphunters, They Shoot Horses..., Jeremiah Johnson and this one. Very unusual films for Hollywood standards, very brave, and as it seems timeless.

In an interview Mr. Pollack once said that he thinks Castle Keep was way ahead of its time. The audience wasn't ready to cope with such a look at war. I wonder if it is ready now? Castle Keep recommended to all non-formula film lovers around the world.

9/10

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