No Time to Die

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No Time to Die
US release film poster
Directed by Terence Young
Produced by Irving Allen
Albert Broccoli
Written by Richard Maibaum
Starring Victor Mature
Leo Genn
Bonar Colleano
Anthony Newley
Cinematography Ted Moore
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release dates
Running time
79 minutes
Country UK
Language English

No Time to Die (US title Tank Force) is a 1958 film about an American sergeant in the British army during World War Two.


In North Africa during World War II, a squadron of British tanks is destroyed in battle by panzers of their German adversaries. A tank commanded by American Sgt. David Thatcher (Victor Mature) is hit and he and driver Trooper "Tiger" Noakes (Anthony Newley) bail out. The squadron's attached reconnaissance vehicle, commanded by Sgt. Kendall (Leo Genn), becomes stuck in the sand and the crew bail out, too.

The three survivors are quickly captured and transported to an Italian run POW camp. Thatcher has a secret and tries to escape at every turn. Puzzled by this, the German laison officer, Hauptmann Ritter (Alfred Burke), makes enquiries and finds out that Thatcher is wanted by the Gestapo for an attempt to kill Joseph Goebbels years before. Before the Gestapo officer can place Thatcher under arrest, Noakes and Kendall escape along with a Pole (Bonar Colleano) and an Australian (Sean Kelly) in the camp's ambulance. They stop at an Italian cafe where Thatcher and Noakes had been billeted earlier in the desert campaign. After a run-in with some Italian soldiers which leads to the cafe owner's (Luciana Paluzzi) death, they resume their journey.

The group is captured by Arabs who kill Bartlett and take the rest to their camp, where the Sheikh contacts the Gestapo and makes a deal. The Gestapo (Martin Boddey) arrive along with Ritter and torture Thatcher, much to the horror of Ritter, who is an honorable soldier. Ritter helps Thatcher's party escape, then commits suicide before the Gestapo can get to him. Kendall and the Pole are seriously wounded and the Gestapo officer is killed.

The group comes upon a lone panzer and Thatcher, Noakes and the Pole kill its crew, the Pole sacrificing himself. Stealing the panzer, Noakes, Thatcher and Kendall head towards Allied lines but get caught up in another tank battle. The panzer is hit and they are forced to abandon it. Kendall dies of his wounds. Thatcher and Noakes join up with a British tank squadron who win the battle. The film ends with Thatcher and Noakes burying their comrade Kendall.


No Time to Die featured authentic war time Cromwell tanks as well as post war Centurions and Charioteers as both British and German tanks. In the opening battle Leo Genn commands an AEC Armoured Car and wears the beret of the Cherry Pickers.


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