MASH (1970)

R   |    |  Comedy, Drama, War


MASH (1970) Poster

The staff of a Korean War field hospital use humor and high jinks to keep their sanity in the face of the horror of war.


7.5/10
63,775

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  • Donald Sutherland and Elliott Gould in MASH (1970)
  • Robert Altman in MASH (1970)
  • Donald Sutherland and Elliott Gould in MASH (1970)
  • Elliott Gould and Jo Ann Pflug in MASH (1970)
  • Donald Sutherland and Elliott Gould in MASH (1970)
  • Elliott Gould and Ben Davidson in MASH (1970)

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7 November 2004 | michelerealini
Overrated
I think "MASH" is not as good as many people say, for me it's not a classic. This Robert Altman movie, made during the Vietnam war years, talks about a group of doctors during the Korea conflict. The film was a big hit when it came out, maybe because it was the first movie to talk about army in a funny way -it teased the US Army...

Today the film looks old and overrated and the political sarcasm seems very weak, actually. There's no doubt that Altman wanted to do an antihero film, but after all "MASH" is a portrait of doctors who make jokes and tries to survive with humor. Themes like stupidity and horror of war are not treated, there isn't an analysis of this. Where's the antimilitarist message?

Even if it's an Altman movie, the film looks like a long TV movie. The director made much better movies. The only interest here, to me, is seeing young actors like Donald Sutherland, Elliot Gould, Tom Skerritt, Robert Duvall, René Auberjonois and Sally Kellerman.

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Interestingly, Richard Hornberger, the original writer of "MASH: A Story of Three Doctors'; hated both the movie and TV series his book were based on; particularly the tv series which featured a very progressive, liberal, whiny , and preachy Hawkeye character; which was the complete opposite of the way Hornberger saw himself. Conversely Robert Altman; the director of the 1970 "MASH" movie; thought the original book was "pretty terrible"; he called it very sexist and racist. Altman also hated the tv show that his movie was based on as well. He said the following in a 2002 article about the tv show: "I didn't like the series because that series to me was the opposite of my main reason for making this film - and this was to talk about a foreign war, an Asian war, that was going on at the time. And to perpetuate that every Sunday night for 12 years - and no matter what platitudes they say about their little messages and everything - the basic image and message is that the brown people with the narrow eyes are the enemy. And so I think that series was quite a racist thing. I didn't approve of it, I don't like it, and I thought it was the antithesis of what we were trying to do. But most people don't even know this movie exists. If you poll the world, they'd say, 'Oh, that was that series with Alan Albert,' or whatever his name was." Tv show creators Larry Gelbart and Gene Reynolds has never commented on the original book or movie. The only commentary Reynolds has given on all of this is that although he is very proud of the work he has done with the tv show; it was a very unpleasant experience working with the actors and the other producers. He said the original shows are very good but in the later episodes the quality waned and the show got preachy.


Quotes

Lt. Col. Henry Braymore Blake: Radar.
Cpl. Walter 'Radar' O'Reilly: Yes, sir. I'll get ahold of Major Burns...
Lt. Col. Henry Braymore Blake: I want you to get a hold of Major Burns...
Cpl. Walter 'Radar' O'Reilly: ...Tell him to hold a couple day surgeons over into the night shift.
Lt. Col. Henry Braymore Blake: Tell him we're going to have hold a couple of surgeons over from the day shift out of ...


Goofs

When the chopper comes in while Hawkeye and Trapper are playing golf, Hawkeye is seen on the edge of the pad. In the next shot, he is seen below the edge of the pad.


Crazy Credits

The shot of Hot Lips being revealed in the shower was replaced with her exiting the helicopter in network and basic cable showings when Sally Kellerman's name was announced.


Alternate Versions

Re-released on DVD and VHS unedited and with an MPAA rating of "R" in January 2002.


Soundtracks

Hail to the Chief
(1810) (uncredited)
Written by
James Sanderson
Sung with revised lyrics by various characters

Storyline

Plot Summary


Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Genres

Comedy | Drama | War

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