MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 2,153 this week

A Thunder of Drums (1961)

5.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.8/10 from 379 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 2 critic

Captain Maddocks will never be promoted beyond Captain because of a mistake that he made in the past. Lt. McQuade is a green rookie who is now under the command of the tough Captain and he ... See full summary »

Director:

(as Joseph Newman)
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 61 titles
created 13 Feb 2011
 
a list of 1057 titles
created 20 Apr 2013
 
a list of 111 titles
created 11 months ago
 
a list of 153 titles
created 8 months ago
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: A Thunder of Drums (1961)

A Thunder of Drums (1961) on IMDb 5.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of A Thunder of Drums.
1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Leon Alastray is an outlaw who has been given sanctuary by Father John, whom he then escorts to the village of San Sebastian. The village is deserted, with its cowardly residents hiding in ... See full summary »

Director: Henri Verneuil
Stars: Anthony Quinn, Anjanette Comer, Charles Bronson
Crime | Thriller | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A US Army colonel in France tries to track down an escaped sex maniac.

Director: René Clément
Stars: Charles Bronson, Jill Ireland, Marlène Jobert
Sci-Fi | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

The world in the late 19th century: A scientist and his team are held as "guests" of Robur on his airship, that he want to use to ensure peace on earth. Peace with all, even if he has to ... See full summary »

Director: William Witney
Stars: Vincent Price, Charles Bronson, Henry Hull
Lola (1970)
Certificate: GP Drama | Romance | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

A middle aged writer of pornographic novels meets and falls in love with a sixteen year old school girl. This alone is cause for concern but when the couple get married and move to America,... See full summary »

Director: Richard Donner
Stars: Charles Bronson, Orson Bean, Susan George
The Family (1970)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A hitman is double-crossed by his girlfriend and barely escapes a murder attempt. He then sets out to take his revenge on the woman and the gang boss who put her up to it.

Director: Sergio Sollima
Stars: Charles Bronson, Jill Ireland, Michel Constantin
Action | Biography | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Machine-Gun Kelly, the famous bank robber, seldom without his Thompson machine gun. The story opens with great jazzy music and a murder shown in shadows. His moll is the driving force ... See full summary »

Director: Roger Corman
Stars: Charles Bronson, Susan Cabot, Morey Amsterdam
Comedy | Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

On the way to commit a bank robbery a gang of outlaws call off at a remote house in order to steal a horse. The house is owned by Amanda, a beautiful young widow who catches the eye of gang... See full summary »

Director: Frank D. Gilroy
Stars: Charles Bronson, Jill Ireland, Douglas Fowley
Action | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

When his ward seeks protection with rival cattleman John Stewart, embittered, jealous rancher Wick Campbell hires ten outlaws to help him seize power in the territory.

Director: H. Bruce Humberstone
Stars: Randolph Scott, Jocelyn Brando, Richard Boone
The Sandpiper (1965)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Free-spirited, young, unwed mother seduces a Episcopalian priest. Lots of pretty beach/ocean scenery.

Director: Vincente Minnelli
Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Eva Marie Saint
Certificate: GP Comedy | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Two former U.S. Army soldiers, Adam Dyer and Josh Corey, join a band of Turkish mercenaries in 1922 Turkey whom are hired by Osman Bey, a local governor, to escort his tree daughters to ... See full summary »

Director: Peter Collinson
Stars: Tony Curtis, Charles Bronson, Michèle Mercier
Kid Galahad (1962)
Drama | Musical | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

When he completes his military service Walter Gulick returns to his birthplace, Cream Valley, New York. He was orphaned as an infant and grew up elsewhere but always wanted to return to ... See full summary »

Director: Phil Karlson
Stars: Elvis Presley, Gig Young, Lola Albright
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A deputy marshal kills a murderer in a town that loved him, and when no one is willing to identify him, he can't collect any reward.

Director: Gene Fowler Jr.
Stars: Charles Bronson, Robert Hutton, John Carradine
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Lt. Curtis McQuade
Luana Patten ...
Tracey Hamilton
...
Sgt. Karl Rodermill
...
Trooper Hanna
...
Lt. Porter
James Douglas ...
Lt. Thomas Gresham
Tammy Marihugh ...
Laurie Detweiler
...
Camden Yates
...
Trooper Eddy
...
Trooper Erschick
Clem Harvey ...
Trooper Denton
Casey Tibbs ...
Trooper Baker
Irene Tedrow ...
Mrs. Scarborough
Marjorie Bennett ...
Mrs. Yates
Edit

Storyline

Captain Maddocks will never be promoted beyond Captain because of a mistake that he made in the past. Lt. McQuade is a green rookie who is now under the command of the tough Captain and he does not seem to be able to do anything right. Lt. McQuade also has trouble with Tracey, but it will be the renegade Indians that will test him and teach him the importance of following orders. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A regiment of forgotten men... a woman no man could forget!

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 November 1961 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Tonnerre apache  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Goofs

On the night before the final battle: around the campfire, bottom right, ribbed shoe-prints are clearly visible in the dust. They were obviously made by modern footwear with synthetic soles. See more »

Quotes

Captain Stephen Maddocks: Bachelors make the best soldiers. All they have to lose is their loneliness.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
It's not my advice, Mr, it's the rule of the game...
16 May 2011 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

..Bachelors make the best soldiers, all they have to lose is their loneliness.

A Thunder of Drums is directed by Joseph Newman and written by James Warner Bellah. It stars Richard Boone, George Hamilton, Luana Pattern, Arthur O'Connell, Charles Bronson, Richard Chamberlain, Duane Eddy and Slim Pickens. Out of MGM it's filmed on location at Old Tuscon & Sabino Canyon in Arizona, and also at Vasquez Rocks, California. It's filmed in CinemaScope and Metrocolor, with cinematography by William W. Spencer and music scored by Harry Sukman.

"There are three things a man can do to relieve the boredom of these lonely one troop posts: He can drink himself into a straight-jacket: He can get his throat cut chasing squaws: Or he can dedicate himself to the bleak monastic life of a soldier and become a great officer."

It's proved to be a divisive film amongst Western aficionados, and it's not hard to understand why. The film begins with a pre credit sequence of suggested savagery, a real attention grabber, then the credits role and the colour and vistas open up the story. From here we are placed into the lonely and fretful life at a cavalry fort in the Southwest. The company consists of tough grizzled Captain Maddocks (Boone) who carries around a burden from his past, his ire further inflamed by the arrival of greenhorn Lt. Curtis McQuade (Hamilton). He needs experienced men, not fresh faced kids, and McQuade isn't helping himself by being involved in a love triangle with Lt. Thomas Gresham's (James Douglas) lady, Tracey Hamilton (Patten). This coupled with the threat imposed by the Indians puts strain on all involved at Fort Canby. And there's the crux of the matter, the film is more interested with character dynamics than breaking out into an action packed B ranked Western.

Newcomers to the film should prepare for a talky picture, but it is a very good talky picture. Sure there's action, including a well staged battle in the final quarter (check out those Apache suddenly appearing from the rocks like ghosts!), but this is a film that is being propelled by dialogue, well written dialogue. There is no point in saying that it's well cast because it isn't, Boone is immense and intense and gets the best dialogue of all, but Hamilton is miscast and Patten totally unconvincing. Pickens is hardly in it and Bronson has a character that could be any number of things; someone who it's hard to know if we should dislike or cheer on. While Chamberlain and Eddy are in it to look nice and play the banjo respectively. Yet with the photography suitably keeping the landscape arid and harsh, and the mood around the base one of impending death or boredom (even the levity of a drunken sequence only enforces what little joy is around), the film has much going for it by way of psychology.

It's no "She Wore A Yellow Ribbon" of course, and its problems are evident, but it does have merits, and if for nothing else it deserves a look for Boone's excellent performance. 7/10


8 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
IT'S ABOUT TIME TO RELEASE THE DVD!! y.ben-david
Has Anyone Else Ever Noticed? lexyladyjax
A THUNDER OF DRUMS Now Available On DVD lexyladyjax
A THUNDER OF DRUMS and RIO CONCHOS on DVD lexyladyjax
Discuss A Thunder of Drums (1961) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?