In 1944, the U.S. Army and Allied forces plan a huge invasion landing in Normandy, France. Despite bad weather, General Dwight D. Eisenhower gives the okay and the Allies land at Normandy. General Norma Cota travels with his men onto Omaha Beach. With much effort, and lost life, they get off the beach, traveling deep into French territory. The German military, due to arrogance, ignorance and a sleeping Adolf Hitler, delay their response to the Allied landing, with crippling results.Written by
After the invasion begins, exterior closeup shots of an airplane dropping a canister shows it covered with water droplets. However, the water droplets are stationary. Had it been an actual aircraft in flight, the wind would be pushing the water backwards. See more »
There is a 20-second overture on a black screen, no 20th Century Fox logo (in spite of this being one of their most expensive productions), and a six-minute cold open before the title is displayed. Apart from the title, there are no credits at the beginning of the film. All cast and crew credits are at the end of the film. See more »
There are two distinct versions of this film: in one, all the characters speak English; in the other, the French and German characters speak their own respective languages, with subtitles. In the latter version the theme played over the end titles is an instrumental, while the former has lyrics written by Paul Anka (the latest DVD version contains both the German/French speaking and the vocal version of the film's musical theme). See more »
Don't Fence Me In
Music by Cole Porter
Played on the radio when Gen. Cota is introduced See more »
Candian Presence in The Longest Day
The previous comments about Canadian participation in the Normandy invasion were significant - insofar as there weren't very many. One of the five Normandy beaches was Canadian (Juno), but there is almost no mention of this in The Longest Day, and I'm sure that one would be hard pressed to find many Americans (and not a whole lot more Canadians) who know this. Unfortunately, it is movies such as this and other popular media that shape the historic knowledge of people on both sides of the border. In the near absence of Canadian content, I find it ironic that a young Canadian (Paul Anka) not only played a part in the movie as an American soldier, but also wrote the theme music. I find it also ironic that the legendary rifle used by US soldiers during WW2 and shown in this movie was designed by a Canadian as well (Garand is a French Canadian name). The cruelest irony, of course, is the fact that thousands of Canadian soldiers were maimed or lost there lives on 6 June 1944 and the days thereafter, with virtually no acknowledgement in this movie. I have always enjoyed watching this movie, but it is unfortunate that I must use my imagination to see in it the heroic and selfless wartime effort of my father's generation, in similar fashion to viewers in the US and UK.
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