The Beast of War war movie
The Beast of War war movie

The Beast of War (1988, United States)

Original / alternative title: The Beast

Categories: tank moviesdesert moviespartisans movies

Running time: 110 minutes

Language: English / Pushto


During Soviet occupation of Afghanistan platoon of T-55 tanks attacks a small Pashtun village, where mujahideen fighters are hiding. While the tanks advance locals use the recoilless gun to damage some of them before Soviets overpower them. To avenge killed soldiers commander of one of the tanks, ruthless Daskal, orders his men to put one of the fighters under tank track and run him over. While they leave the village Daskal is unable to confirm their position due to radio damaged by the enemy fire and fact that part of his military map was damaged by the flames. After Soviets head back to base mujahideen fighters return to village and realize Soviets have lost their way and head for a blind valley. They gather the weapons and prepare ambush. Separated from their unit, with limited water and fuel supply, unsure if they head in the right direction, the crew begins to lose morale, but Daskal is convinced he knows best. The conflict between the tyrannical commander and naive young driver Koverchenko, who thinks they should do everything by the book, builds up. During the stop on the river bank Daskal shoots their Afghan guide Samad, convinced that he was a traitor, who planned to lead them into ambush. Furious Koverchenko confronts Daskal, who orders crew to tie the driver to the rock and left him for dead. When tank drives away Koverchenko is found by the mujahideens.

American war movie about Soviet tank lost in the mountains of Afghanistan and the ruthless commander, who drives his crew to the limits. While it is one of the best tank movies ever made the story is full of ridiculous ideas and worked rather as propaganda tool than drama based on real events. In 1988 the war in Afghanistan was still a bloody conflict started by the invasion of Soviet forces, but The Beast of War shows not what this conflict looked like, but rather how Hollywood thought it looks like. The Soviets are shown like Nazis in World War 2 - ruthless, senseless and brutal, while mujahideen as the civilized, peace loving people. It works well up to a point, when Koverchenko is found by the fighters - from that point it all falls into pieces with one decision of the creators worse than the other. In general it is rather good war movie, but could have been better if some of the flaws of the screenplay would be fixed.




Our rating

6.0

Film value

7 / 10

Realism factor

2 / 5

Adventure factor

4 / 5

Historical accuracy

2 / 5



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Creators of The Beast of War

Kevin Reynolds movies

William Mastrosimone movies


Cast of The Beast of War

George Dzundza movies george-dzundza

George Dzundza

as Commander Daskal


Jason Patric movies jason-patric

Jason Patric

as Konstantin Koverchenko


Steven Bauer movies steven-bauer

Steven Bauer

as Khan Taj


Stephen Baldwin movies stephen-baldwin

Stephen Baldwin

as Golikov


Donald Patrick Harvey movies donald-patrick-harvey

Erick Avari movies erick-avari

Erick Avari

as Samad


Kabir Bedi movies kabir-bedi

Kabir Bedi

as Akbar


Chaim Jeraffi movies chaim-jeraffi

Chaim Jeraffi

as Moustafa


Shoshi Marciano movies shoshi-marciano

Shoshi Marciano

as Sherina


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Events depicted in The Beast of War

Soviet-Afghan War (1979-1989)







The Beast of War trivia


Helicopter

The helicopter used in the film was French Aerospatiale SA.321 Super Frelon, which was a stand-in for Soviet Mi-8 transport helicopters used in Afghanistan. SA.321 was chosen due to its similar appearance to Mi-8.





The Beast of War quotes


Daskal:
[while handing out grenades to the crew] You know our standing orders. Out of commission, become a pillbox. Out of ammo, become a bunker. Out of time, become heroes.




Themes in The Beast of War

T-55 tankSoviet tanksmujahideen fighters

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