Cert 15 Stars 3
Opening titles of real war footage set a chilly and sombre tone to this respectful and effective Second World War action adventure is a by-the-numbers boys’ own adventure lifted by its great locations and a hard working cast.
John Hannah keeps a stiff upper lip as the British Army liaison officer back in Blighty as English actor Ed Westwick stars as a square-jawed US Major leading a team of British commandos to extract an important scientist from the hands of the Germans in Nazi-occupied Poland of 1943.
Of course plans go awry, radios don’t work, they can’t identify which locals are collaborators, and the Russian army who are much more used to fighting in the bleak snow covered landscape, are also the same target.
There’s plenty of courage and sacrifice among the many shoot-outs, and the fierce and the excitingly staged three-way battle of foreign troops on Polish soil to determine ownership of Polish resources, can be read as a scathing view of the war.