6.7/10
600
21 user 8 critic

Commandos Strike at Dawn (1942)

Approved | | Drama, History, War | 30 December 1942 (USA)
A gentle widower, enraged at Nazi atrocities against his peaceful Norwegian fishing village, escapes to Britain and returns leading a commando force against the oppressors.

Director:

John Farrow

Writers:

Irwin Shaw (screen play), C.S. Forester (story)
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Prime Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

The Comedians (1967)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A cynical Welsh hotel owner secretly romances a diplomat's wife in Haiti, under the violent reign of the despot "Papa Doc" Duvalier.

Director: Peter Glenville
Stars: Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor, Alec Guinness
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

After having a child out of wedlock, a young Puritan woman is pressured to reveal the name of her lover.

Director: Victor Sjöström
Stars: Lillian Gish, Lars Hanson, Henry B. Walthall
La Bohème (1926)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A group of starving artists try to survive in 1830s Paris, including a seamstress and the would-be playwright she loves.

Director: King Vidor
Stars: Lillian Gish, John Gilbert, Renée Adorée
The Cobweb (1955)
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

At an exclusive psychiatric clinic, the doctors and staff are about as crazy as the patients. The clinic head, Dr. Stewart McIver, thinks that it would be good therapy for his patients to ... See full summary »

Director: Vincente Minnelli
Stars: Richard Widmark, Lauren Bacall, Charles Boyer
A Wedding (1978)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The daughter of a Louisville truck driver marries the scion of a very wealthy family, but reception at the family estate is boycotted by the invited guests.

Director: Robert Altman
Stars: Carol Burnett, Desi Arnaz Jr., Paul Dooley
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

The young village minister was not quite as discreet as he might have been in fulfilling the strange trust left by the dying mother, but it certainly worked for the common good. By the ... See full summary »

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: Mary Pickford, Charles Hill Mailes, Kate Bruce
Annie Laurie (1927)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The story of the famous battle between the Scots clans of Macdonald and Campbell, and the young woman who comes between them, Annie Laurie.

Director: John S. Robertson
Stars: Lillian Gish, Norman Kerry, Creighton Hale
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A scheming mother wishes to make a succesful match between her daughter and a prince, yet another man, a commoner, may stand in the way.

Director: Paul L. Stein
Stars: Lillian Gish, Rod La Rocque, Conrad Nagel
Short | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Meg was one of the "painted women," who had got to the point where she did not care. Anita, her room-mate, on her death-bed told the cadet who managed them both about her old blind mother ... See full summary »

Director: John B. O'Brien
Stars: Lillian Gish, Blanche Sweet, Josephine Crowell
Drama | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

After a hard struggle the old man has just saved enough money to justify the marriage of his daughter and adopted son, when word comes from the oil fields nearby that his brother has lost ... See full summary »

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: W. Chrystie Miller, Lillian Gish, Robert Harron
Romance | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A very pretty girl, is always surrounded by many male admirers, much to the dismay of one very shy fellow, who never can get a chance to speak with her. One day the girl visits a friend in ... See full summary »

Director: D.W. Griffith
Stars: Walter Miller, Mary Pickford, L.M. Wells
Lucky Star (1929)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Mary, a poor farm girl, meets Tim just as word comes that war has been declared. Tim enlists in the army and goes to the battlefields of Europe, where he is wounded and loses the use of his... See full summary »

Director: Frank Borzage
Stars: Janet Gaynor, Charles Farrell, Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Muni ... Eric Toresen
Anna Lee ... Judith Bowen
Lillian Gish ... Mrs. Bergesen
Cedric Hardwicke ... Admiral Bowen (as Sir Cedric Hardwicke)
Ray Collins ... Johan Bergesen
Robert Coote ... Robert Bowen (as Flying Officer Robert Coote RCAF)
Rosemary DeCamp ... Hilma Arnesen
Alexander Knox ... German Captain
Elisabeth Fraser ... Anna Korstad
Richard Derr ... Gunnar Korstad
Erville Alderson ... Johan Garme
Barbara Everest Barbara Everest ... Mrs. Olav
Rod Cameron ... Pastor
Louis Jean Heydt ... Karl Arnesen
George Macready ... Schoolteacher
Edit

Storyline

Erik Toresen, widower and fishery observer, leads a quiet life in a small Norwegian town; but after the Nazi occupation, German abuses lead Erik to form a Resistance group. After a killing, Erik flees to the wilderness and finds a secret German air base; he resolves to escape to England with its location. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Striking like lightning! Fighting like demons! Loving like men women dream of! See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 December 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Commandos Come at Dawn See more »

Edit

Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,300,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Columbia Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

A rejected score was composed by Igor Stravinsky. He published his unused music as "Four Norwegian Moods" See more »

Goofs

During the firing squad scene, the second soldier from the left fails to correctly load the bullet into the chamber. On closing the rifle bolt, the bullet is seen hanging out of the chamber, and then drops to the ground. See more »

Quotes

EriK Toresen: ...I've lived a quiet life. The Germans have not lived quiet lives. We must learn from them how to become gangsters, thugs, useful with knife, dynamite, poison!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: Dedicated to the officers and men of the armed forces of Canada, Great Britain and Fighting Norway who participated in the filming of this picture. See more »

Connections

Featured in Reach for Glory (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

Commandos March
Written by Ann Ronell and Louis Gruenberg
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Commandos Invade Norway
20 February 2008 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

In Commandos Strike At Dawn, Paul Muni is a Norwegian fisherman who does not like what the Nazis have brought in occupying his country. After a murder he resolves to leave Norway and do something about it.

As Eric Toreson, Muni has his most stoic role with the exception of Benito Juarez. But his facial expressions and the controlled anger in his voice tell the story than a lot of theatrics.

It's unfortunate that a better story could not be utilized for a man of his talents. I'm still struggling over the idea that before the war an admiral of the Royal Navy, Cedric Hardwicke together with his daughter Anna Lee, are visiting Muni's village. It certainly doesn't look like a vacation spot or that she would take up with Muni who was certainly beneath her in the European class system.

A year later Warner Brothers produced The Edge of Darkness also about the Norwegian resistance which starred Errol Flynn. Now Flynn was in no way in Muni's class as an actor, but as an action hero he certainly filled the bill.

Lillian Gish is in this film as the wife of Ray Collins who is picked up for his anti-Nazi views and tortured. For someone of her talents, she's given little to do.

Western fans will recognize B picture cowboy actor Rod Cameron in the role of the Lutheran parson of the village. George MacReady is the village school teacher in one of the few sympathetic roles he ever had on screen.

Doing double duty is Alexander Knox as the Nazi captain among the occupiers of the village. You can also easily recognize Knox's voice as the unseen parson blessing the British commandos as they embark on a raid near Muni's village.

It's typical World War II propaganda and if it weren't for the quality of the cast Commandos Strike At Dawn would barely be a blip on the nostalgia radar.


9 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 21 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending Movies With Prime Video

Enjoy a night in with these popular movies available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed