Suppose They Gave a War and Nobody Came

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Suppose They Gave a War and Nobody Came
Suppose They Gave a War and Nobody Came - 1970 - Poster.png
1970 theatrical poster
Directed byHy Averback
Produced byFred Engel
Written byHal Captain
Don McGuire
StarringBrian Keith
Ernest Borgnine
Suzanne Pleshette
Tony Curtis
Music byJerry Fielding
CinematographyBurnett Guffey
Edited byJohn F. Burnett
Distributed byCinerama Releasing Corporation
Release date
  • September 11, 1970 (1970-09-11)
Running time
113 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1,080,000[1]

Suppose They Gave A War and Nobody Came (also known as War Games, Old Soldiers Never) is a 1970 American drama-comedy film feature film directed by Hy Averback, produced by Fred Engel, and starring Brian Keith, Don Ameche, Tony Curtis, Ernest Borgnine, Suzanne Pleshette, Ivan Dixon, and Pamela Britton. The plot is a mixture of comic and dramatic elements and concerns the reactions of a number of World War II veterans to the contemporary US Army.

The title is derived from an American antiwar slogan from the hippie subculture during the Vietnam War era, popularized by Charlotte E. Keyes in her 1966 article for McCall's magazine titled "Suppose They Gave a War and No One Came".[2][3]


Col. Flanders commands a U.S. Army base in the South. To improve relations with the locals, he decides to throw a community dance. He gives the assignment to Warrant Officer Michael M. Nace, sergeants Shannon Gambroni and Jones, and a captain, Myerson.

A bigot named Billy Joe Davis is a big man in town, backed by Harve, a redneck sheriff. Harve considers a pretty barfly, Ramona, to be his girl, so when he catches Gambroni and her together, he has the sergeant placed under arrest for lewd conduct in public.

Nace is drunk and of no help. Jones, who is black, is refused a loan by Mr. Kruft, a banker in town, so in anger he decides to spring Gambroni from jail. Billy Joe retaliates by calling in his armed militia, so Nace steals a tank from the base and fights back. Harve takes three of the soldiers as his prisoners.

Nace and Jones (in the tank) manage to arrive at the town, where they wreak havoc by running over the stone statue of a Confederate war hero and ram-crash into the local jail, enabling Gambroni to break out.

By the time the dust settles, Col. Flanders and his men have arrived in town to save the day. The town mayor fires the sheriff for abuse of authority and the military men pledge to repair the damage caused by the tank.



The film earned rentals of $630,000 in North America and $450,000 in other countries, recording an overall loss of $4,160,000.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "ABC's 5 Years of Film Production Profits & Losses", Variety, May 31, 1973 p 3
  2. ^ Allan, Kenneth. (2006). Contemporary Social and Sociological Theory: Visualizing Social Worlds. Pine Forge Press: Thousand Oaks, California. pgs 348-349
  3. ^ "Suppose They Gave a War and No One Came". McCall's. October 1966. Retrieved 2014-06-22.

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