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In northwestern India soon after the turn of the 20th Century, Moslem rebels seek to kill a six-year-old Hindu prince to end his family line. Captain Scott of the British Army is ordered to get the prince out of the region safely. Adventure ensues as Scott sneaks the child away, through Moslem-held territory, by train. Also on board are the boy's American governess, an arms merchant, a cynical reporter, and two upper class Britons. Written by
George S. Davis <email@example.com>
The American release, entitled "Flame Over India", gives Lauren Bacall top billing. The British release, which is entitled "North West Frontier" and is the one on DVD, gives Kenneth More, a popular star in England, top billing. See more »
A positively rip-roaring joy from start to finish.
We are in British India, Moslem rebels want to kill a young Hindu prince and thus killing his family blood line. The British army are charged with the task of ensuring the prince is safely escorted from the troubled provinces. The duty falls to one intrepid Captain Scott, the only chance to achieve the aim is by train, with his allies on board being a rather unique group of individuals, can Scott achieve the mission against the mounting odds?
North West Frontier has everything a great action adventure should have, action, tension, drama and an array of wonderfully colourful characters. The opening to the film is pulsating, as Scott has to fight off the rebels whilst smuggling the prince and his governess out to safety. From then on we are on a train journey that is rich with enjoyment, the tension mounts among the passengers, not least because of the class differences, and perhaps motives are not in alignment? But they must club together if they are to survive this journey.
Kenneth Moore, Lauren Bacall, Herbert Lom and Wilfrid Hyde-White (comedy gold when under attack) are all pulling together to make a cracking yarn. Directing duties falls to J. Lee Thompson, whose CV boasts Ice Cold In Alex, The Guns Of Navarone and Cape Fear, so this material was thankfully in very safe hands. The photography from Geoffrey Unsworth is top notch, barren and desolate landscapes beautifully realising the peril of the passengers' journey, whilst the music from Mischa Spoliansky leaves a lasting impression.
This train may well be crammed full of genre stereotypes, and sure enough the patronising nature of the piece is dated at the edges, but this remains a gloriously enjoyable film that the whole family can readily digest. 9/10
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