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During the last winter of the Civil War, cavalry officer Amos Dundee leads a contentious troop of Army regulars, Confederate prisoners and scouts on an expedition into Mexico to destroy a band of Apaches who have been raiding U.S. bases in Texas. Written by
Tom Dawson is credited as the film's costume designer, but his son Gordon Dawson, who was a Class 1 wardrobe designer at Columbia Pictures at the time, was also bought on to age and destroy the various principal costumes. In later years, Gordon Dawson would become one of Sam Peckinpah's closest collaborators, including associate producer and second unit director on The Getaway and Pat Garrett And Billy The Kid, and co-screenwriter on Bring Me The Head Of Alfredo Garcia. See more »
In the final battle, Captain Tremaine is struck by Tyreen and falls from his horse into the river, but in the very next shot he is back in the saddle. See more »
In the territory of New Mexico towards the end of the Civil War, an Indian, Sierra Charriba, and his Apache warriors raided, sacked and looted an area almost three times the size of Texas.
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Opening credits prologue:
1864 JOURNAL 1865
In the territory of New Mexico, toward the end of the Civil War, an Indian Sierra Charriba, and his 47 Apache warriors raided, sacked, and looted an area almost three times the size of Texas.
On October 31, 1864, an entire company of the 5th United States Cavalry sent out from Fort Benlin to destroy him, was ambushed and massacred at the Rostes ranch.
We are indebted to Timothy Ryan, bugler 5th United States Cavalry, the company's sole survivor, for his diary, the only existing record of this tragedy and the campaign that followed. See more »
Pekinpah's excellent Western which works as standard Cavalry movie, a meditation of loyality and friendship and a study in a dangerous obsession.Heston is very good as the titular Major who will risk everything to catch the raiding Apache's and restore his good name - he is stiff necked and inflexible and plays nicely against Harris's dashing Southern Captain who only wants to get home. It has been compared to Moby Dick with Heston as Ahab and who will stop at nothing to achieve his goal. It has fine support from the usual Pekinpah regular company with epic battle scenes offset by more thoughtful passages - this is the original restored version at 2h13m (on release the studio cut huge chunks out if it) and ranks up there with the very best films he made.
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