War is brewing between the soldiers at an otherwise quiet army base and the civilians of a nearby Southern town. Brian Keith is an officer who tries to keep the peace. However, peace is hard to come by with Ernest Borgnine as a stereotypical dumb hick sheriff who's quick to call in the local militia. Tony Curtis plays a skirt-chasing sergeant who can't stay out of trouble and soon lands in jail. Brian Keith borrows a tank to release his friend from jail. Things get more chaotic after that.
***Soldiers vs. townfolk in late 60’s Arizona with a fabulous cast*** “Suppose They Gave a War and Nobody Came” (1970) is a comedy/drama that details events in remote southern Arizona when militarists at an Army base (Tony Curtis, Brian Keith, Bradford Dillman & Ivan Dixon) conflict with the authorities of the nearby town (e.g. Earnest Borgnine) eventually leading to all hell breaking loose when a couple of disenchanted soldiers steal a tank. This is a dialogue-driven dramedy stuffed with understated witticisms hidden within the verbiage; so I suggest using the subtitles to catch ’em all. The highlight is the great cast, but curvy cutie Suzanne Pleshette isn’t used enough. An additional attraction is that this is a great way to go back in time and observe American society in 1969 (when the film was shot). The producers were shooting for the tone of the contemporaneous “Kelly’s Heroes” transplanted to late 60’s America. Unfortunately, the script needed a rewrite to flesh out more entertaining prospects. It’s a flat viewing experience as is. Eastwood’s “Heartbreak Ridge” took elements of it and made a better flick. Not that “Heartbreak” is great or anything, but it’s superior to this. The film runs 1 hour, 53 minutes and was shot at Fort Huachuca, Arizona, with some scenes done at Warner Brothers Studios, S. Cal. Don Amech and John Fiedler also appear. GRADE: C