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|Directed by||Sydney Pollack|
|Produced by||John Calley
|Written by||William Eastlake (novel)
|Music by||Michel Legrand|
|Editing by||Malcolm Cooke|
|Distributed by||Columbia Pictures|
|Running time||107 minutes|
|Box office||$1.8 million (US/ Canada rentals)|
Castle Keep is a "firmly pro- and anti-war" 1969 American war film directed by Sydney Pollack, starring Burt Lancaster, Patrick O'Neal, Jean-Pierre Aumont, Bruce Dern, and Peter Falk. The movie appeared in the summer of 1969, a few months before the arrival of Pollack's smash hit They Shoot Horses, Don't They?.
The film is based on a novel by William Eastlake published in 1969.
During the Battle of the Bulge, a ragtag squad of American soldiers, led by one-eyed Major Falconer (Burt Lancaster) and including Sgt. Rossi (Peter Falk), art expert Captain Beckman (Patrick O'Neal) and the narrator, Pvt. Allistair Benjamin (Al Freeman, Jr.), take shelter in an ancient castle, containing many priceless and irreplaceable art treasures, which the impotent Count (Jean-Pierre Aumont) hopes they will defend against the advancing Germans as well as, he also hopes, impregnate the Countess (Astrid Heeren) so that his line may continue.
- Burt Lancaster as Major Abraham Falconer
- Patrick O'Neal as Captain Lionel Beckman
- Jean-Pierre Aumont as The Count of Maldorais
- Peter Falk as Sergeant Rossi
- Astrid Heeren as Therese
- Scott Wilson as Corporal Clearboy
- Tony Bill as Lieutenant Amberjack
- Al Freeman Jr. as Private Allistair Piersall Benjamin
- James Patterson as Elk
- Bruce Dern as Lieutenant Billy Byron Bix
- Michael Conrad as Sergeant DeVaca
- Caterina Boratto as Red Queen
- Olga Bisera as the Baker's Wife
The film opened to mixed reviews. Many felt Pollack's tale of war, while earnest, was a little unconvincing. Still others felt the film was farfetched in its story.
- Kate Buford, Burt Lancaster: An American Life, Da Capo 2000 p 249
- "Big Rental Films of 1969", Variety, 7 January 1970 p 15
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