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In 1954 during the final days of French military involvement in Indochina French Army Colonel Pierre-Noel Raspeguy is leading his paratroopers in the decisive battle of Dien Bien Phu. A weakened French garrison faces a major assault by Communist Viet Minh troops. Colonel Raspeguy's frantic calls for reinforcements only brings a token force of a planeload of paratroopers and ammunition. When their position is overrun by the enemy Raspeguy and his men are taken prisoners. After the peace treaty they are released and they return to France where Colonel Raspeguy receives the command of a new airborne regiment bound for Algeria. The French are trying to prevent Algeria from obtaining full independence from France. The French Army is engaged in counter insurgency operations in both urban and rural environments against the Algerian guerrilla led by the Algerian National Liberation Front. This is Colonel Raspeguy's last chance to prove his command abilities and to save his military career. Written by
Remember that Henry Fonda movie THE BATTLE OF THE BULGE ? That`s the war movie that was set in the fog shrouded snow bound forests of the Ardennes in December 1944 but for some reason the movie`s big set piece battle takes place on an arid desert plain . LOST COMMAND starts with a very similar error in geography involving the battle of Dien Bien Phu where the French built a heavily fortified base in the middle of a mountainous jungle in 1954 , except this film would have us believe that the battle took place in the middle of a desert !
But I`m more than willing to forgive this goof as LOST COMMAND is a good film , it`s maybe not a great film but if you like action adventure / war films you`ll hopefully enjoy this as much as I did and director / Producer Mark Robson should be congratulated for making a film showing the French fighting man in a good light . Say what you like about French political leaders but France does have a long noble military tradition with a glorious defeat being every bit as courageous as a glorious victory . But the screenplay doesn`t glorify conflict and rightly points out that violence breeds violence , it pits former friends against one another , and it`s always the most innocent who suffer the most
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