Cast & Crew
Director : Sam Peckinpah
Producer : Wolf C. Hartwig
Screenwriter : Julius J. Epstein, James Hamilton, Walter Kelley,
Starring : James Coburn, Maximilian Schell, James Mason, David Warner, Klaus Löwitsch,
Sam Peckinpah's Cross of Iron is distinguished as a war movie for the major reason that it's one of the only English-language movies made that stars the Nazis as the movie's heroes. Facing off against Russia on the eastern front, the real drama playing out not with the enemy, but between hardened Steiner (James Coburn) and careerist Stransky (Maximilian Schell), who cares little for the war and everything for glory -- namely getting an Iron Cross for his valor. Unfortunately, the movie gives their sparring relatively little screen time as Peckinpah indulges in endless combat scenes (this was his only war movie), which try the patience of viewers who came for the real story.