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The Command (1954)

Approved | | Western | 13 February 1954 (USA)
An army doctor, with no combat experience, is forced to take command of a cavalry troop escorting a wagon train through hostile Indian country when the unit's commanding officer dies.

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(novel), (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Capt. Robert MacClaw
...
Martha Cutting
...
Sgt. Elliott
Carl Benton Reid ...
Col. Janeway
...
Pvt. Gottschalk
...
Dr. Trent
Robert Nichols ...
2nd Lt. O'Hirons (as Bob Nichols)
Don Shelton ...
Maj. Gibbs
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Storyline

Just before dying from wounds received in a skirmish with Indians Capt. Forsythe orders his cavalry troop's doctor, Capt. Robert MacClaw, to take command. His men don't like it and think that Sgt. Elliott should have been put in temporary command until they reach the Fort. MacClaw admits he knows little of battle tactics but takes charge only with the promise that he will do the best he can. If anything, the men are embarrassed at having such an inexperienced man leading them and MacClaw agrees not to let on that he's a doctor. When they arrive at a staging post they are ordered by the Colonel in command of a group of infantry to escort a wagon train of settlers moving west. There may be smallpox among them however and MacClaw is caught between his promise to his men and the demands of Martha Cutting who is trying to deal with the epidemic. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Story of the Unconquerable!

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

13 February 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Rear Guard  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(WarnerPhonic/RCA) (magnetic prints)| (optical prints)

Color:

(WarnerColor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Began shooting late July 1953. See more »

Goofs

In 1876 the single-shot Springfield Model 45-70 1873 rifle was the standard US Army infantry rifle, as identified by Captain MacClaw when he picks up an abandoned one. The cavalry used a single-shot carbine version of the Springfield 1873. Yet the final battle sequences show both the infantry and the cavalry troopers exclusively using Winchester or Henry style lever action repeating rifles, even though these weapons were never Army issue. See more »

Quotes

Capt. Robert MacClaw: The riflemen are going to fight from the wagons.
Maj. Gibbs: Fight from wagons?
Capt. Robert MacClaw: Well, why not?
Maj. Gibbs: It's never been done! Wagons are supposed to be used as a defense.
Capt. Robert MacClaw: So the book says. Let's keep a closed book and an open mind, Major.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in They Came to Rob Las Vegas (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

 
ONE OF THE TRULY GREAT WESTERNS
30 August 2002 | by (MANCHESTER NH) – See all my reviews

A great example of Guy Madison's talent. This movie has always been one of my favorite westerns. I only wish I could obtain it on either VHS or DVD. I always loved the fact that the success or failure of his mission depended on his mens faith in his rank, not knowing he was a surgeon and had no combat experience. I thought it hilarious that both his commanding and fellow officers had no knowledge of the lack of experience in the man they willingly submitted their destinies too.


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