Ice Station Zebra

Ice Station Zebra (1968)

3 corrected entries

Corrected entry: The MacGuffin here is the reel of film from the Soviet spy satellite, with the plot predicated on the satellite having inadvertently photographed the USSR's own military installations, a windfall prize for the West if it can be captured. The plot, then, is entirely gratuitous, because the Western Powers also had their own spy satellites to do exactly that job without all the melodramatic adventure. The British agent Mr Jones even describes in detail that the Russian spysat is based on stolen Western technology.

Correction: Mr. Jones makes very clear that the Soviet satellite is using recently stolen camera technology that is significantly better than anything West is using. Although it is not discussed how long it will take the West to recover from the theft and recreate and launch a comparable satellite, it IS clear that the pictures on the Soviet satellite are the best available at the time. The plot stands intact.

Corrected entry: As the Soviet MiGs rush towards Ice Station Zebra, we see five close-ups of the obvious models of the jets. As the actual aircraft fly over the party with the camera on the ground looking up, we see only four jets.

Larry Koehn

Correction: The 5 Russian (model) jets in formation are MIG-21's. The 4 jets (actual) are US F-4 Phantoms, not MIGS.

Corrected entry: The Russian fighters (as emblemed with Red Stars), seen approximately 1 hour in the film when the Russians are searching for the downed capsule, aren't actually russian planes: they are English, Lightining F-61 fighter planes.

Correction: There are two times the Russian fighter planes are shown on screen. The first time is as scale models of Soviet Mig-21s flying from Russia to the North Pole. The second time is stock film footage of a USA F-4 Phantom II flying over the people at the North Pole. There are no English Lighting F-61 fighter planes shown anywhere in this movie.

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Mistakes

"Ice Station Zebra" is one of dozens of films which make the mistake of showing people carrying rifles such as M-16s with the magazines inserted. In the scene where Marine Captain Jim Brown arrives at the submarine via helicopter, he comes aboard passing his M-16 through a hatch with the magazine inserted, barrel first - a double safety violation. I first saw the movie in a Marine Corps base theater, and all of us yelled at the screen when we saw that.

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Trivia

Patrick McGoohan committed himself to appearing in "Ice Station Zebra" whilst he was filming his famous TV series "The Prisoner". However, as is well known, "The Prisoner" went massively overbudget and seriously behind schedule. As a result, McGoohan had to leave filming of "The Prisoner" in late 1967 for several weeks, in order to appear in "Ice Station Zebra". This is the reason why several episodes of "The Prisoner" have McGoohan either absent or only in previously filmed flashbacks and inserts...McGoohan could not be filming both "The Prisoner" at Elstree, and "Ice Station Zebra" in Hollywood at the same time.

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