In World War II, a strategic Italian village agrees to surrender to the Allies only if it's allowed to organize a celebratory festival while giving aerial reconnaissance the false impression of fierce ground fighting.
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A by-the-book captain is ordered to capture a strategic village in Italy. The Italian soldiers are willing to surrender, if they can have a festival first. The lieutenant convinces the captain this is the only way. Because of aerial reconnaissance, they must look like they are fighting. To sort this out an intelligence officer is sent in. Meanwhile the festival gets complicated with the mayor's daughter.Written by
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Harry Morgan played Major Potts who becomes comically nonsensical in this movie. In the third season of the TV series MASH, he played essentially the same character as Major General Bartford Hamilton Steele. The episode was "The General Flipped at Dawn", which first aired on September 10, 1974. When McLean Stevenson as Colonel Henry Blake, left the show at the end of the 3rd season, the producers hired Morgan and created a new character, Colonel Potter. See more »
When Major Pott looks out of the man hole cover just before the tank passes over him, his shirt is light tan. Next shot when he is in the catacombs again, his shirt is brown. See more »
Gen. Sherman said that war is hell, but if he had seen "What Did You Do in the War, Daddy?", he would have eaten his words. The movie focuses on an American platoon that captures an Italian village in WWII. The Italians are willing to surrender as long as they can have their festival. This creates a problem for the Americans, who have to look like they're fighting. Meanwhile, one of the commanding officers gets lost in the catacombs and goes crazy.
Dick Shawn displays the same type of wacky humor that he employed in "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World", and we even get to see Carroll O'Connor, pre-"All in the Family". Perfect.
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