Kelly's Heroes

This tongue-in-cheek 1970 variation on The Dirty Dozen looks less fresh than it did in the year of its release, but it still has some enjoyable moments. Clint Eastwood stars along with Donald Sutherland, Harry Dean Stanton, Telly Savalas, Don Rickles, Carroll O'Connor, and Gavin MacLeod in the story of American soldiers who try to steal gold behind enemy lines in World War II. Sutherland's hippie G.I. doesn't have the sardonic and timely appeal he did during the Vietnam War, but the film's irreverence and several of the performances are worth a visit. --Tom Keogh

Production: MGM
  1 nomination.
 
IMDB:
7.7
Rotten Tomatoes:
80%
GP
Year:
1970
144
3,694 Views

Big Joe:
[looking around inside a yacht where Captain Maitland is standing] What are you doing in there, sir?

Capt. Maitland:
I'm checking out the motor.

Big Joe:
The motor? What for?

Capt. Maitland:
We're pulling out and I want to see if this yacht is worth taking back to base.

Big Joe:
What about Nancy!?

Capt. Maitland:
Third Army's taking over. We’re going into reserve. Once they take Nancy, we go back into the line.

Big Joe:
Aw, Captain, I don't think you have the welfare of your men at heart here! This is a big, big town, with a lot of with a lot of passionate broads... great restaurants, feather beds in rooms with hot water... Look, Captain, we've been rained on, pushed on, bombed on... mortared on by Mulligan all the way from the Normandy beachhead!

Capt. Maitland:
I'm aware of that problem, Sergeant.

Big Joe:
“I’m aware of that problem...” You've been aware of that problem ever since we got out of the water at Omaha! Look, why is it that every time we get to a town like Nancy, it’s these clowns with the clean uniforms and ties that get to ride the trucks into town and make their pitch?

Capt. Maitland:
The General says we pull out, so we pull out.

Big Joe:
Look, Captain! You can't let them do this! I gotta get my men some broads they start freaking-out with each other!

Capt. Maitland:
I'm aware that that situation might be developing... [looks around] Think I could get this into the hold of a B-17?

Big Joe:
We're point section to the whole damn Army! Nancy's our town, Captain!

[voice from outside] Hey, Big Joe!

Big Joe:
What is it!?

[voice from outside] Babra says there's a company of Germans pushing up the road!

Big Joe:
I'll be with you in a minute! [turns to Capt. Maitland ]

Big Joe:
Look, Captain! We got it all figured out. We even got a guide! All we have to do is get in there!

Capt. Maitland:
There’s a couple of German divisions who say you can't.

Big Joe:
OK! So we need a little help!

Capt. Maitland:
All I need is to figure out how to get this yacht out of here. [pause] You get back to the barn. I'll get the Engineers and do it myself.

Big Joe:
You're supposed to be in charge of this outfit!

Capt. Maitland:
You're doing such a good job, Sergeant- why should I get in your way?

Big Joe:
According to this map, we got a river to cross before we get into this town of yours.

Kelly:
Well, there's a bridge right here, six miles out.

Big Joe:
There was a bridge. The Air Corps knocked every bridge out of that river months ago.

Kelly:
Uh-uh, intelligence reports the Air Corps knocking 'em out by day and the Germans rebuilding 'em at night. Now, all we have to do is be there tomorrow morning at dawn and we got ourselves a bridge.

Big Joe:
Oh! Well, how about the German Army? Do you think they'd mind us crossing their bridge there, eh, Kelly?

Kelly:
Probably.

Big Joe:
You know something, Kelly? I think you're crazy. Better yet, I think I'm crazy! How the hell I ever let you talk the guys into this?! Push 30 miles behind enemy lines, take a bridge held by the Germans and then go into a town we don't know how many German soldiers are guarding!

Kelly:
Well, I figure there's between 30 and 40 troops in that town.

Big Joe:
All right, how'd you figure that?

Kelly:
Well, it's of no military importance, it's not big enough for a garrison-

Big Joe:
You still didn't answer the question! How'd you figure 30 or 40 men?

Kelly:
Because that's the normal amount of support for three Tiger tanks.

Big Joe:
[Aghast] Tigers? Where'd the hell the Tigers come from?!

Kelly:
Well, that's why we have Oddball and his Shermans.

Big Joe:
Does he know about the Tigers?

Kelly:
Not yet, no.

Big Joe:
You bet your sweet ass he doesn't, or he'd be still on that funny-farm of his! He may be nuts, but he's not crazy enough to put Shermans up against Tigers! You know once those things get rolling, they'll blow that whole town to pieces, including us, Kelly!

Kelly:
Oh, you're too smart to let that happen, Joe.

Big Joe:
Oh, wow...

Kelly:
You'll figure us a way in and out of that town, and I know you've got a good head for tactics.

Big Joe:
Yeah? And I intend to keep it right here on my shoulders, Kelly!

General Colt:
This man is the man I have my mind on today and I'll tell you who he is: this is my opposite number, General Bogle, commanding the 2nd German Armor Division. Now I look at that face, I can read that character... this guy's a loser. Here I am sitting in his headquarters, I'm drinking his scotch... hell, I even got one of his broads hanging around here somewheres. The guy's a born loser... but you gentleman have not buried him yet. Now you call yourselves leaders of men?

Major Roach:
They're putting up strong resistance, General.

General Colt:
Aw, c'mon, Roach, I flew over the battlefield this morning; why, I could march a divisional dress parade with band music right through the middle of their lines!

Major Roach:
Well, what about our flanks, sir?

General Colt:
Aw, the hell with your flanks, Roach, how many times have I gotta tell ya forget about your flanks, willya?

Major:
Sir, there's still half a panzer division between here and Nancy...

General Colt:
Without gas. Without gas, gentlemen.

Colonel Booker:
Oh, they're getting gas, sir, it's coming up at night.

General Colt:
How?

Colonel Booker:
By truck.

General Colt:
The Air Force has got my orders to blow every bridge in this sector out of existence.

Colonel Booker:
Yes, sir, and they're doing it. And the Germans, they're rebuilding the bridges every night.

General Colt:
Well, we're supposed to be blowing 'em up again in the daytime. Captain, get me those aerial photographs.

Captain Jablonski:
Right, sir.

Major Roach:
General, last night someone gave orders to redirect our mortar fire against some damn crossroads.

General Colt:
Listen, Roach, I don't want any excuses outta you, ya hear me? All I want is to know why this loser of a general is keeping me the hell out of Nancy.

Major Roach:
Sir, we haven't got the supplies - it's just a matter of logistics.

General Colt:
Logistics?

Major Roach:
Yes, sir.

General Colt:
We got logistics comin' out of our ears! What we need is fighting spirit. The will to win! Where are those aerial photographs?

Captain Jablonski:
[Rummaging around for the photos] I'm sorry, sir, they don't seem to be here.

General Colt:
They don't what?

Captain Jablonski:
[Still looking for the pictures] I can't locate them, Sir.

General Colt:
Hey. [CPT Jablonski looks at Colt] Did you lose my aerial photographs?

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