During the 1920s, French Foreign Legion Major William Foster's unit is protecting an archaeological dig, but the discovery of an Arab sacred burial site prompts the angry Arab tribes to attack Foster's small garrison.
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Foreign Legion Major Foster (Hackman), an American haunted by his memories of the recently-ended Great War, is assigned to protect a group of archaeologists at their dig. Foster's unit includes the charming, thieving rascal Marco (Hill), who joined the Legion only to avoid prison. After long stretches portraying the boredom and hardship of day-to-day life in the Legion, Foster's command occupies a small village where the archaeologists believe they've found a burial site sacred to the Arabs. An Arab leader (Holm) uses this affront to unite the tribes in Jihad, and attacks the tiny Legion garrison at the dig. An epic battle follows, very reminiscent of the film "Zulu". Costumes, firearms, and props are all very authentic-looking, and show great attention to detail. Written by
Cameron Fairchild <email@example.com>
In the mid 1950s, it was announced that Errol Flynn would be starring in his first television series, a French Foreign Legion show, which would have gone by the title "March or Die". It never materialized. See more »
The Legion uses French military equipment and customs. Yet in one scene, when the new recruits are awakened one morning, an American bugle call (reveille) is used. See more »
Maj. William Sherman Foster:
[Marco has rescued Top Hat and brought him back to the Legion's fort. Major Foster is not impressed with this "heroism"]
On a march a man dies where he falls. We don't go back for stragglers.
I'll remember that, sir.
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This is a very unusual film in some ways, and very interesting. Gene Hackman is good, and Terence Hill is excellent in a different part for him. Hill almost seems to be acting as Steve Mcqueen. Whatever his technique, its effective. There is one thing that sets this film apart from every other movie out there, it has one of the all time great battles. Yes, it has to be one of the best ever filmed, a thing of true beauty. Violent, gritty, and very realistic. You can feel the desperation as the legionaires frantically play out their own version of Custer's Last Stand. Truthfully, the big climatic battle scene could stand alone as a good film. If you like Hackman or Hill/Mcqueen don't miss this one. Papillion joins the Foreign Legion...very cool!!!!! Loved it
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