|Regisseur:||Ken Annakin, Andrew Marton|
|Studio:||20th Century Fox Home Entertainment|
Box set, Black and White, Special Edition
"The Longest Day" is Hollywood's definitive D-day movie. More modern accounts such as "Saving Private Ryan" are more vividly realistic, but producer Darryl F Zanuck's epic 1962 account is the only one to attempt the daunting task of covering that fateful day from all perspectives. From the German high command and front-line officers to the French Resistance and all the key Allied participants, the screenplay by Cornelius Ryan, based on his own authoritative book, is as factually accurate as possible. The endless parade of stars (John Wayne, Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchum, Sean Connery, and Richard Burton, to name a few) makes for an uneasy mix of verisimilitude and Hollywood star-power, however, and the film falls a little flat for too much of its three-hour running time. But the set-piece battles are still spectacular, and if the landings on Omaha Beach lack the graphic gore of "Private Ryan" they nonetheless show the sheer scale and audacity of the invasion. --"Mark Walker"