Yanks (1979)



Director:    John Schlesilnger.

Starring:    Richard Gere (Matt Dyson), Lisa Eichorn (Jean Morton), Vanessa Redgrave (Helen), William Devane (John), Chick Vennera (Danny Ruffelo), Wendy Morgan (Mollie), Rachel Roberts (Mrs. Clarrie Moreton), Tony Melody (Mr. Jim Moreton), Martin Smith (Geoff), Philip Whileman (Billy), Derek Thompson (Ken), Simon Harrison (Tim), Joan Hickson (Mrs. Moody), Arlen Dean Snyder (Henry), Annie Ross (Red Cross lady).

love stories involving American troops in England



Starting in 1942 a million American troops flowed into England from the United States. They were being prepared and trained for an invasion of the coast of France, then held by the Germans. The Brits often called the Americans, "Yanks," which brings the response from one soldier from the southwest, "Don't call me a Yank.  I ain't a Yank.  For God's sake, I'm from Oklahoma."

With so many young American men around, there were bound to be a lot of romances in bloom, especially since many of the British men were off fighting the Germans in far off places.

This story follows three love stories, involving Brits and Yanks.  The major one is the romance between Richard Gere and Lisa Eichorn.  Two secondary ones are between William Devane and Vanessa Redgrave and Gere's buddy (Chick Vennera) and a young female ticket taker on the English buses (Wendy Morgan).  

There are some culture clashes and some resentments against the American troops, but by and large the troops are well accepted.  It is the unfolding of romance in this difficult setting that is fairly absorbing.  

The train scene at the end gives some idea of just how many romances had been going on between English women and American men.  


Patrick Louis Cooney, Ph. D.





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