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The McKenzie Break

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Director  Lamont Johnson
Music director  Riz Ortolani
Language  English / German
6.5/10 IMDb

3/5 Blu-ray

Genre  War, Drama, Action
Producer  Arthur Gardner
Country  United Kingdom
The McKenzie Break movie poster
Release date  28 October 1970 (1970-10-28) (New York City)
Writer  William W. Norton (screenplay), Sidney Shelley (novel)
Cast  Brian Keith (Captain Jack Connor), Helmut Griem (Kapitänleutnant Willi Schlueter), Ian Hendry (Major Perry), Jack Watson (General Kerr), Patrick O'Connell (Sergeant Major Cox), Horst Janson (Leutnant Neuchl)
Similar movies  Independence Day, The Spy in Black, Sealed Cargo, Suicide Fleet, The Blue Eagle, Hellcats of the Navy

The mckenzie break 1970 opening clip 1 brian keith ian hendry helmut griem

In a World War IIera internment camp in Scotland, presiding officer Maj. Perry (Ian Hendry) suspects that the imprisoned Nazi soldiers he monitors are plotting a large-scale prison break. But after Perry fails to figure things out himself, eccentric Irishman Capt. Connor (Brian Keith) is brought in to do some detective work. Before long Connor traces the plan back to the German Capt. Schlueter (Helmut Griem), leading to a man-to-man battle of wills and intellects.


The McKenzie Break movie scenes

The McKenzie Break is a 1970 British war drama film directed by Lamont Johnson, starring Brian Keith as Jack Connor, an intelligence officer investigating recent disturbances at a German prisoner of war (POW) camp in Scotland. The POWs are led by the charismatic, yet ruthless, Willi Schluter (Helmut Griem).

A German U-Boat commander and 600 prisoners plan a daring escape from a PoW camp in Scotland.

The mckenzie break intro


The McKenzie Break movie scenes McKenzie is a remote understaffed POW camp in Scotland where an assortment of German fliers U boat men and soldiers are being held prisoner The restive

At a Prisoner of War (POW) camp for Germans in the north of Scotland, Kapitan zur See Willi Schluter (Helmut Griem) - a German submariner – challenges the authority of the camp’s embattled Commanding Officer, Major Perry (Ian Hendry). British Army Captain Jack Connor arrives to investigate whats happening at the McKenzie POW Camp.

The McKenzie Break movie scenes garbage versus garbage collectors

Connor believes the camp disturbances are a cover for an escape attempt. During a mass brawl two POWs escape dressed as British soldiers and Connor notices an outcast German POW named Neuchl (Horst Janson), being dragged from the barracks and fleeing from the Germans. He is badly beaten and later that night in the hospital is strangled before Connor gets the chance to learn about Schluters plans.

With Connor investigating the camp, Schluter leads his 28-man escape party out of a tunnel the next day. Meeting the two escapees who have arranged a U-boat to pick them up, they all head for the coast. Unknown to Schluter, Connor has broken the code used in letters sent by POWs to Germany and knows the plan.

Connor, along with General Kerr (Jack Watson), starts searching for the prisoners. The Germans head for the coast and burn their escape lorry, which is seen by a reconnaissance plane. Drawn by the burning lorry, Connor (now in an aircraft) locates the Germans attempting to paddle towards a surfaced U-boat at dusk. Connor calls in a Royal Navy motor torpedo boat (MTB) with depth charges to engage the U-boat. With only 50 yards to go, Connor orders the pilot to buzz the inflatable dinghies, delaying Schluters craft, and with the MTB arriving, the U-boat dives, leaving Schluter and three comrades stranded.

The mckenzie break 1970 captain connor arrives clip 3 brian keith ian hendry helmut griem


  • Brian Keith as Captain Jack Connor
  • Helmut Griem as Kapitan zur See Willi Schluter
  • Ian Hendry as Maj. Perry (Camp CO)
  • Jack Watson as Major General Ben Kerr
  • Patrick OConnell as Sergeant Major Cox
  • Horst Janson as Leutnant Neuchl
  • Background

    The plot of the film loosely reflects real-life events at the PoW camp in Grizedale Hall, Cumbria and Bowmanville, Ontario; in particular, the interception of German attempts to communicate in code with the captured U-boat ace Otto Kretschmer, and the "trial" of Captain Rahmlow and his second-in-command, Bernhard Berndt from the U-570, which was surrendered in September 1941, and recommissioned as HMS Graph. Kretschmer was also the subject of Operation Kiebitz, an attempt to liberate several U-boat commanders by submarine, from Bowmanville POW camp in Ontario, Canada, which was foiled by the Royal Canadian Navy.


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