A group of army personnel and nurses attempt a dangerous and arduous trek across the deserts of North Africa during the second world war. The leader of the team dreams of his ice cold beer when he reaches Alexandria, but the problems just won't go away. Written by
The flies were so bad on location that most of the cast had to be sprayed with DDT, a chemical which is now banned. See more »
The Military Policemen in the film are wearing RMP shoulder titles. They should be CMP. It was not until 1946 that King George VI granted the 'Royal' prefix to the Corps of Royal Military Police (RMP) in recognition of its outstanding wartime record. (CRMP was chosen to avoid confusion with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police or RCMP) See more »
I recently watched the film again after many years. It bears its age well and I had forgotten the number of nail-biting sequences: brigadier's car blown up, chase by Germans, second check by Germans, Anthony Quayle in the quicksand, and best of all, "winding" the ambulance up the sand cliff to get out of the Qattra Depression, etc. etc.
The four main characters play their roles well although my personal favourite is Anthony Quayle as the South African/German. He successfully conveys a figure of strength and confidence, balanced by a sense of defeatism when his true identity is revealed.
John Mills is solid in his playing of the worn-out but still dogged British officer although he is diminutive against Anthony Quayle and Harry Andrews.
Sylvia Sims is plucky and just about believable whilst Harrt Andrews is totally dependable as the sergeant.
Altogether a cracking film !
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