Charge of the Light Brigade Reviews
Enjoy a classic, and classic talent.
The British military are stationed in Indian in the late 1800s to manage a series of uprisings and protect the innocent. Unfortunately, his men are attacked and numerous soldiers, women, and children are massacred and a military captain observes the events. He swears revenge on those responsible and leads attack against them.
"Is nothing sacred to you?"
"Yes, Benjamin my dear, your liver."
Michael Curtiz, director of Casablanca, Mildred Pierce, White Christmas, We're No Angels, The Proud Rebels, Yankee Doodle Dandy, and Bright Leaf, delivers The Charge of the Light Brigade. The storyline for this picture is interesting and contains some interesting characters and scenarios. The acting is excellent and the cast includes Errol Flynn, David Niven, Donald Crisp, Olivia de Havilland, and Nigel Bruce.
"Life is sweet and dear when one cannot have it."
I came across this on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) and had to DVR it as I am a huge Errol Flynn and Michael Curtiz fan. The content is very solid as is the execution. This isn't the best war picture I've ever seen, but this is classic Flynn and very well done. I recommend seeing this once, even if it isn't the best Flynn or Curtiz picture.
"You wouldn't mind giving this to my family...just in case..."
This movie is another teaming up of director Michael Curtiz, Errol Flynn, and Olivia de Havilland. Max Steiner's soundtrack was welcome, who has become a staple with Warner Brothers movies. Errol Flynn writes about the many horses that died due to the trip cords in this movie, including one of the stunt men.
Loosely based on Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem, it has very little to do with the factual accounts of the massacre of the 27th Lancers. If you wanted a factual account, watch the 1968 version with David Hemmings and Vannessa Redgrave. However, if you would prefer a movie with more action, romance, as well as a memorable camel toe of Errol Flynn, this is the movie to watch.
Most of this movie is placed in British-held India, with a romantic triangle between Major Geoffrey Vickers (Flynn), Elsa Campbell (de Havilland) and his brother, Captain Perry Vickers (Patric Knowles). While Geoffrey was away, his fiancÚ and brother were falling in love with each other to the discust of Elsa's father Colonel Campbell (Donald Crisp). Poor Geoffrey is the go-to guy when it comes to political intrigue and is constantly being sent off on other adventures.
It's in India that we meet the evil Surat Khan (C. Henry Gordon) who has been shunned by Queen Victoria and aligns himself with the Russians, who will be at war with the British. It was his men who killed British men, women and children at Chukoti, making Geoffrey promise revenge in the Crimea.
Yes an earlier time for sure, animal rights stepped in to halt filming with the horrendous horse massacre on location but the fact they still got away with it and were able to even start shows a different attitude which does cast a nasty spell over this film. The final charge sequence is very good for a film of the this time but its clear where horses have died for the screen, impressive stunts and action but is it worth it??
As for the film its pretty dull throughout, much loving between Havilland and Knowles, much war talk with Flynn and plenty of the 'stiff upper lip old boy'. The usual contracted players as mentioned, they all go well together and shows why Warner stuck them together for many more pictures. Despite the fictional sub plots and characters this does play well if you can take all the talking, as with modern films you are waiting for the final big push and charge. This is where it gets more exciting and our swashbuckling hero Errol begins to shine...but not for long.
Looks good, great garrison sets (actually built for real) amid the scorching heat, costumes are superb as expected and acting is solid from all the cast with solid direction from Warner stalwart Curtiz, its just a bit boring to be honest.