Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Battle Of The Damned (1969)

Battle Of The Damned

Italy 1969 colour

Fullscreen, dubbed into English

aka Quella Dannata Pattuglia

Director Roberto Bianchi Montero Writers Roberto Bianchi Montero, Arpad DeRiso

Cast Dale Cummings (Captain Bruce Clay), “Monty Greenwood”/Maurice Poli (Corporal Marwell), “Herbert Andreas”/Herb Andress (German Pilot), Fabio Testi (Pvt. Terry Wilson)

Welcome to hell, Italian war movie style, with a spaghetti actioner from 1969 directed by journeyman director Roberto Bianchi Montero called Battle Of The Damned. Spaghetti war, you ask? Of course! You find a trend worth copying and the Italians were there first and more frequent than anyone. And while the spaghetti western was at its high point, the Italian war film – admittedly a much smaller genre with only (only!) around a hundred titles – more than held its own.

In a plot welded together from Play Dirty and Tobruk, Battle Of The Damned is the tale of an American commando suicide mission headed across the North African desert to blow up a major German fuel depot. Their leader Captain Clay (played by American actor Dale Cummings) has a hair-trigger reputation, which naturally causes concern amongst the other men (including spaghetti western staple Fabio Testi) as they move through the bleak Egyptian exteriors, their mission AND their collective sanities slowly falling to pieces before the film’s explosive (to say the least) finale.

It’s dusty, regulation action with an interesting backdrop and awe-inspiring set design for the underground finale. What more can we say other than have fun when the bullets start to fly in Battle Of The Damned. (Andrew Leavold)

No comments: