Lost Command (1966)

Unrated  |   |  Drama, War  |  May 1966 (USA)
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Reviews: 8 user | 3 critic

French Army Colonel Raspeguy leads his paratroopers in battle against the Communist Viet Minh in Indochina and against Algerian guerrilla during the Algerian War.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Capain. Boisfeuras
Grégoire Aslan ...
Dr. Ali Ben Saad
Jean Servais ...
General Melies
Maurice Sarfati ...
Jean-Claude Bercq ...
Orsini (as Jean-Claude Berq)
Syl Lamont ...
Jacques Marin ...
Jean-Paul Moulinot ...
De Guyot
Andrés Monreal ...
Gordon Heath ...


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 nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | War


Unrated | See all certifications »




Release Date:

May 1966 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Les centurions  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Movie makes use of helicopters like US did for Vietnam, after French left. See more »


The Vietminh Commander played by Burt Kwouk is speaking Cantonese, a southern Chinese dialect, and not Vietnamese. See more »


Capt. Phillipe Esclavier: Nobody goes into the village, I'm in command here and that's an order!
[takes out service pistol]
Verte: If that was you, sir, all chopped up, we'd do the same for you.
Capt. Boisfeuras: We must avenge the mutilation of our three comrades.
[turns to others]
Capt. Boisfeuras: Go!
Capt. Phillipe Esclavier: Stop!
[shoots near Capt. Boisfeuras feet]
See more »

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User Reviews

If You Liked "Zulu," You'll Like "The Lost Command"
24 July 2000 | by See all my reviews

Perhaps because it came out so soon after Pontecorvo's classic "La Battaglia di Algeri" (The Battle of Algiers), "The Lost Command" got, well, lost. That's too bad, because I saw this movie only once about 20 years ago, but still recall it vividly as a surprisingly well-done action film spiced with social commentary that doesn't overwhelm the whole.

Anthony Quinn is especially believable as a hard-bitten professional soldier who manages to rise to high command in spite of his peasant birth. Alain Delon is his pretty boy right-hand and George Segal has a particularly interesting turn as an Arab serving with Quinn and Delon in Indochina at the film's beginning who is radicalized upon returning to his native Algeria and takes up arms against his former comrades.

The highlight of the film is its retelling of the Battle of Algiers, with Quinn in the role of the real-life para colonel Jacques Massieu.

The battle scenes are well-done and realistic, especially the opening sequence, which is set in the final, desperate hours at Dien Bien Phu in 1954. Despite being well-made and underrated, this film is not often shown on television, so you'll probably have to rent it.

31 of 32 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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