Where Eagles Dare

Chosen answer: This is not unusual in older films. Earlier costume designers were less attentive to historical accuracy and freely incorporated current fashion trends into period movies. It was just an accepted practice and movie audiences back then were often less discerning and/or unaware of inaccuracies. Today's costumers have greater access to historical information, do more research, and strive for authenticity.

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Question: During the opening dialogue, it is explained that Carnaby's plane was brought down after a raid on Nuremberg. Later in the same scene, it is explained that he was on his way to Egypt when his plane was shot down. Which one was it?

Answer: The way I interpret it is that "following" the raid on Nuremberg, the plane was then on its way to Egypt when it was shot down by the Germans, prompting the mission to rescue Carnaby.

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The "saturation bombing of Nuremberg" was a separate raid which should have lured all the fighters away from the Austrian border. The "General's" plane, on its way to Crete, was shot down by a roving Messerschmitt.

Question: Why didn't Clint Eastwood shoot the radio operator with the silenced pistol rather than trying to sneak up to him to stab him?

Answer: Contrary to popular belief, a gun silencer (also called a suppressor) is noisier than depicted in many movies, whereas a knife is completely silent, assuming the victim dies instantly and does not cry out while struggling.

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Question: Why did Richard Burton crash the bus through the doors of the structure it was in, instead of having one of the team quietly open the doors and slowly driving it out and away from the village? Didn't what Burton did draw unwanted attention?

Answer: Logic is seldom a factor in action movies. "Crashing the gate" has always been a popular action film gimmick, as it creates urgency and tension and elevates the audience adrenaline level, even when "crashing the gate" makes no sense. A similar scene is found in "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade," when Jones and his father are making their castle escape in Austria. Indiana Jones ingeniously distracts the Nazis by launching an unmanned motorboat down the canal, and the Nazi pursuers are adequately distracted. In fact, the Nazis probably would have left the scene entirely, chasing the motorboat, if Jones had just waited patiently for another minute or so. He doesn't wait. Rather, Jones bursts out of a crate on a motorcycle within feet of the Nazis, instantly giving away his true position and initiating the whole motorcycle chase scene that follows. Again, logic goes out the window, and the hero senselessly "crashes the gate" for no other reason than to drive the action.

Charles Austin Miller

Exactly! That's why they called them "action" movies.

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Question: Why doesn't Lt. Schaffer shoot the radio operator with the silenced pistol instead of trying to sneak up behind him to kill him with a knife? Why didn't Mr. Eastwood or Mr. Burton point out the idiocy of that part of the plot to the director?

Answer: Because "silenced" pistols aren't silent. Hollywood has created this myth. Weapon sounds can be suppressed but never silenced.


Answer: This question has already been answered. There's no "idiocy" in choosing one method over another on how to kill someone in that type of situation. Obviously, it was decided that the knife was a better option. This is a movie, not reality. Choices about scenes are made for what works best dramatically for the plot, not about what someone would necessarily do in a real-life situation.

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Question: When Richard Burton is holding his gun on all the people in the meeting and asks if one of the guards could come in and watch them, why doesn't the guard just shoot him?

Answer: When the guard comes in, Burton explains what's going on. Also he is dressed as a German officer so his explanation and actions are plausible.

Continuity mistake: Major Smith forces Carnaby to reveal his true identity by firing a single bullet which fragments the upper section of his chair. Soon after when Smith stands behind Carnaby (revealed as Cartwright Jones) the chair is undamaged.

More mistakes in Where Eagles Dare

Mary Ellison: I nearly froze to death in that damn plane. Why couldn't you have supplied some hot water bottles or an electrically heated suit? I thought you loved me.
Major John Smith: Can't help what you think.

More quotes from Where Eagles Dare

Trivia: The idea of helicopters was not necessarily new in WW2, but effective designs were not made until after the war; there is evidence from some literary sources (one of them being a book named "German Secret Weapons of WW2" or something like that) that the Germans did indeed conduct experiments and designs on this vehicle type.

More trivia for Where Eagles Dare

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