Palestine, 1917. The British advance has been stopped by the Turkish line running from Gaza to Beersheba. The latest attack on Gaza has failed. The attacking forces included a regiment of ... See full summary »
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Dick Van Dyke,
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Palestine, 1917. The British advance has been stopped by the Turkish line running from Gaza to Beersheba. The latest attack on Gaza has failed. The attacking forces included a regiment of Australian mounted infantry, the Light Horse... Lighthorseman Frank is wounded in a skirmish with Bedouin. He is replaced by a young soldier, Dave, who proves to be a crack shot, but reluctant to fire at the enemy. Dave proves himself during a German biplane attack. Recuperating in hospital, he meets a sympathetic nurse, Anne... The regiment is called upon for a bold flanking attack on Beersheba. But how do you convince the Turks the main attack will come at Gaza? And how do you attack across a desert without water? Written by
I have watched this movie at least five times. Initially, I was a little disappointed by the tedium of the first half of the movie. I began to realize, however, that the first half of the movie is a pretty good reflection of military life prior to the second half of the 20th century: long periods of boredom and routine punctuated by major confrontations.
I've noticed that a few reviewers have remarked on the final "cavalry charge," which suggests to me that they really weren't paying much attention to the movie. The final charge on the Turkish positions is so much more awe-inspiring given the usual tactics of the Lighthorsemen. One of the most thrilling moments is when the Aussies prepare to meet the enemy on horseback and, instead of pulling out the classic cavalrymen's sabers, draw their bayonets for the charge. You almost want to laugh at the sight of 16" knives against the well-emplaced Turks.
This is one of the few war movies based on actual events that is fairly accurate, too. Take a look at some of the sites dedicated to the 4th Light Horse Briagde and you will see what I mean. A letter from one of the actual participants to his brother is an almost perfect description of the events as shown in the movie.
**** out of ***** if only for the charge
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