I have a certain affection for films shot in Ultra Panavision 70 and Camera 65, processes from the ’50s and ’60s that yielded aspect ratios of 2.76:1. (They were technically identical or damn near.) Actually, there were 11 such films in all, but I only have a fondness for four — Raintree County (Camera 65), Ben-Hur (ditto), Mutiny on the Bounty (UP70) and The Fall of the Roman Empire (ditto).

The first three were shot by the great Robert Surtees, and the framings and lighting are quite elegant. Empire was shot by Robert Krasker (Odd Man Out, Brief Encounter, The Third Man).

I have no affection at all for Quentin Tarantino‘s The Hateful Eight, which squandered the UP70 potential by mostly shooting inside the darkly lighted Minnie’s Haberdashery.

I’ve never seen Ken Annakin‘s The Battle of the Bulge (UP70, released on 12.16.65), and after watching this Smilebox trailer it’s possible I may never set the time aside.

The dialogue conveys stodginess, or what I would call an overdose of “officer-talk”. You can tell the whole thing smells. Any mid-’50s-and-after movie costarring Dana Andrews is something to be feared. German soldiers speaking German-accented English was outlawed after The Longest Day, but Annakin went there anyway. The Wikipedia page features a long list of historical inaccuracies. Dwight D. Eisenhower came out of retirement to denounce the film for gross inaccuracies. It was shot in Spain with little or no snow on the ground, and too many scenes feature the wrong kind of typography (I’ve been to the the Ardennes forest) and not enough pine trees.