1970 • Patton

Patton: 1970 Best Picture winner

All hail George S. Patton!

God, I feel like an idiot trying to write a review on a war movie.  I am as far from a history buff as there is, especially with things concerning war.  My knowledge of US history is pretty much limited to who was president, when each state came into the union, and some important racial moments.  No matter how many World War I or II movies I see, I can never quite recall who was involved, who our allies were, or why the war was going on.   Needless to say, I was less than excited to dive into three hours of Patton.

Patton sells itself as somewhat of a biopic of General George S. Patton, but as Netflix’s description points out, it masquerades as a war movie.  That bode well for me, meaning I’d have to pay more attention to George C. Scott’s portrayal of the hotheaded Patton than the war itself.

The movie begins with Scott in front of a gigantic American flag, giving a big speech to members of the Army.  I seem to remember this scene being spoofed in other movies or TV shows, so I take it this is a famous scene.  The film takes us to northern Africa where US troops are stationed and Patton takes over as commander.  Throughout the movie, the troops move north and fight some epic battles.  The best scene was the end where the US troops made it 100 miles in 48 hours through a blizzard to make an attack.

My wife must be so proud of me.  Throughout the movie, I kept asking her questions, many of which she either ignored or truly didn’t hear me asking.  And during a scene where the Americans were shooting the hell out of the enemies, I remarked how if it were my country getting shot at and everyone was dying, I’d just turn around and run the other way and hide, and then go back to my fallen comrades later.  Obviously I would never, ever, ever make it in the armed forces.

Scott was excellent as Patton.  It was one of the best performances so far by a lead actor in one of the Best Picture movies.  I think I would have hated Patton, especially the way he treats one of the US troops who is mentally broken down and can’t go on.  Patton slaps him and calls him a coward, then sends him to the front line.  Sounds kinda like a certain junior high basketball coach of mine!

The movie doesn’t seem to do anything spectacular production-wise.  No remarkable visual scenes, nothing artsy, very few memorable lines.  I suppose the film as a whole resembled Patton’s personality.

Despite my ignorant lack of knowledge of our country’s history, and my general disdain for war movies, and my hatred for the character Patton, I still didn’t hate this movie and managed to stay relatively entertained throughout its full 2:51 run time.

And with that, I’ll relieve you from reading any more of this pitiful review.

1 Comment

  1. Hi,
    I’m starting a blog on Management in Films and I picked this movie due to its remarkable display of Leadership traits. While General Patton is at no point in time the most lovable character (he actually admits that himself) he anyhow achieves to inspire his army to rise to the highest performances ever seen during WWII. The liberation of Bruges is one of the most remarkable feats in WWII.
    Besides George C. Scotts stellar performance as General Patton I also highly recommend this movie to serve as example how a highly comitted Leader can inspire thorugh Leadership by example.

    Leadership in Management

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