The Mercenaries (Dark of the Sun) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Mercenaries (Dark of the Sun) Reviews

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½ December 27, 2009
Terrific action picture about a group of mercenaries led by Captain Curry (Rod Taylor) who are hired to travel by rail deep into the Congo and retrieve a group of stranded townsfolk and $25 million worth of uncut diamonds.
Based on the book by Wilbur Smith, and directed by the great Jack Cardiff, who began his career as a cinematographer, shooting such masterpieces for Michael Powell and Emerich Pressberger as Black Narcissus (for which he won an Oscar), The Red Shoes and A Matter of Life and Death, and moved on to directing with other fantastic action adventure pictures like The Long Ships, The Liquidator and Girl on a Motorcycle, this film is fast, brutal and exciting, despite being cut down for what was deemed excessive language and violence. Hopefully a restored version will make it's way to DVD soon.
(A favorite of director Quentin Tarantino, he used both a bit of the score as well as cast actor Taylor as Winston Churchill for his most recent picture, Inglourious Basterds)
December 26, 2009
THE LONG SHIPS director Jack Cardiff made one of the greatest (and most rugged) mercenary movies of the 20th century when he helmed the Rod Taylor-Jim Brown actioneer DARK OF THE SUN in 1968. Rough-hewn mercenary Captain Curry (Rod Taylor of THE TIME MACHINE) agrees to take a specially made-up train 300 miles into the war-torn Congo to retrieve $50-million in diamonds before a savage, bloodthirsty Simba army can laid their hands on it. Congolese president Mwamini Ubi (Calvin Lockhart of PREDATOR 2), agrees to pay Curry $50-thousand dollars when he delivers the ice. Ruffo (Jim Brown of THE DIRTY DOZEN) is a Congo-born mercenary soldier who serves as Curry‚??s sergeant. This mission is more a matter of national interest for him. Ubi tells them that ostensibly the train is designed as public relations to save a number of white folks trapped in enemy-held territory, but the diamonds are priceless to him because the banks in Europe are calling in his loans. Curry takes 50 elite soldiers from the nation‚??s army. Unfortunately, the commander, Henlein (Peter Carsten of STALINGRAD: DOGS, DO YOU WANT TO LIVE FOREOVER), decides to come along after he learns about the fortune in uncut diamonds. Curry hates Henlein because Henlein is a former Nazi soldier who loves to parade around with his swastika displayed on his chest. Meantime, Curry has to enlist the aid of an alcoholic medical doctor, Dr. Wreid (Kenneth More of FLAME OVER INDIA), but Wreid refuses until he learns that he will receive a case of good whiskey and a $100-a-day for sewing up bullet wounds. No sooner than our heroes made up their train and pulled out than they run into a United Nations fighter plane cruising the area. Although they received United Nations clearance to embark on their mission, they find themselves pitted against a conscientious pilot who knows nothing about the agreement. The pilot strafes the train. Curry and company blaze away with their machine guns and eventually bring him down. By now Dr. Wreid awakens to learn that Curry has pitched the case of liquor and expects him to start doing his job. Along the way, they pick up a passenger, French refugee Claire (Yvette Mimeux of THE TIME MACHINE), and chug into the town. Meanwhile, the sadistic leader of the rebel Simbas--General Moses (Danny Daniels) is closing in on Curry. The catch is that the diamonds are locked up in a bank in a time vault that will not open for three hours. Reportedly, a real event that occurred in the late 1950s in the Belgian Congo inspired not only the movie but also the Wilbur Smith novel. Despite being made in 1968, DARK OF THE SUN pulls no punches and gets pretty grisly at times. Cardiff lensed this film on location in Jamaica. The heroes rarely catch a break in this movie in this harrowing, action-packed thriller.
½ October 3, 2009
ROD TAYLOR YVETTE MIMIEUX JIM BROWN are electrifying brilliant in this very tough, violent, atmospheric tough action adventure set in the Congo of the 1960s. Probably the greatest WAR film ever made has outstanding plot, tension, direction, music and a cast that deserved to win many oscars. Major screen chemistry between ROD TAYLOR (always excellent)
and Jim Brown as 2 respectful mercenaries with a tough job to carry out.
Jim Brown the leading Black American actor of the 1960s and 1970s was
at his best as Ruffo who is vindicated by Captain Curry (Rod Taylor).
ROD TAYLOR and YVETTE MIMIEUX were first paired magically on screen
in the All time classic film Geoge Pal's TIME MACHINE in 1960.
July 16, 2009
Hopefully, this will be aired uncut by TCM when Inglourious Basterds is released. It is well worth seeing, as pretty much every element exceeds what a casual viewer might expect from a typical genre film. Powell & Pressburger's cinematographer Jack Cardiff delivers a visual flair for action far ahead of his time, and Jacques Loussier's one-off score is amazing. If you have enjoyed The Train or Five Man Army, you're in for a treat.
½ May 4, 2009
Veselo drustvo koje cine placenik, njegov prijatelj iz Konga, bivsi nazi oficir i doktor alkoholicar skupljaju ekipu i bacaju se u misiju spasavanja dijamanata u srcu Konga. Bio sam ugodno iznenadjen ovime kaj sam pogledao, stvarno jedan od boljih old school klasika na koje sam naletio igrom slucaja.Inace film je za svoje vrijeme bio dost brutalan
February 27, 2009
A now cult classic action-adventure film that deserves to be seen by a much wider audience. Rod Taylor at his best, I think, playing the tough-as-nails guy, rather than the more gentlemanly roles he'd played earlier -- though he's fine in them, too. See if for its terrific action, performances, intriguing story, and to see the authentic locales in Africa -- quite unusual for the time.
June 17, 2008
couillu ... une serie B au poil de yéti ... ahhh yvette mimieux ... y a pas mieux !!
January 16, 2008
Rod Taylor is hot, hot, hot in this!!!!
½ October 26, 2007
An astounding-for-its-time film, with some EXTREMELY brutal and realistic violence, some extreme pessimism and cynicism, and some very heavy inspiration for Dogs of War later in the 80s. Fantastic action sequences, some great DP work, interesting performances, very little cliche, and definitely worth finding if you can. Bad-ass and rough, just the way a Mercenary film should be!
½ September 25, 2007
Pretty much the most awesome movie on the topic of Mercenaries in the Congo
September 9, 2007
Great action scenes! Especially the train massacre
August 4, 2007
sweet sweet action movie with an awesome premise. a german guy actually says "vhere are zee diamonds?" and what could be better than that. how about a chainsaw fight. omg.
July 15, 2007
I hope that it is good
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