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The Lighthorsemen (1987)

PG | | Drama, War | 8 April 1988 (USA)
In 1917 when the British forces are bogged down in front of the Turkish and German lines in Palestine they rely on the Australian light horse regiment to break the deadlock.

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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Dave Mitchell
Nick Waters ...
Lighthorse Sergeant
John Larking ...
Station Master
John Heywood ...
Dave's Dad
Di O'Connor ...
Dave's Mum
...
Reichert
Ralph Cotterill ...
Gen. Friedrich von Kressenstein
Bill Kerr ...
Grant Piro ...
Charlie
...
Col. Murray Bourchier
Serge Lazareff ...
Rankin
...
Frank
John Walton ...
Tas
Tim McKenzie ...
Chiller
Jon Blake ...
Scotty
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Storyline

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 David Stanko

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Lighthorsemen are coming... and nothing can stop them. See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 April 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Jinetes de leyenda  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

AUD 10,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Website Cinephilia reports of the Jon Blake accident and legal case: "Jon Blake was critically injured whilst driving home on December 1, 1986, after the final day's filming of The Lighthorsemen (1987). He sustained severe brain injuries and in December, 1995, the New South Wales Supreme Court ruled that Blake should be compensated for the loss of potential earnings as a star in the United States. After taking evidence from actors, directors, and film critics who indicated his career could have been as big as Mel Gibson's, the court awarded him $32 million in damages. This was later reduced to $7 million after the defence appealed." See more »

Quotes

Dave: Hey, Scotty, you're not Scotch, are you?
Scotty: No.
Dave: Then, why do they call you Scotty?
[Scotty thinks]
Scotty: Cause I'm Irish.
See more »


Soundtracks

AUSTRALIA WILL BE THERE
Music and lyrics by W.W. 'Skipper' Francis
By Arrangement with Allans Music (Australia) Pty. Limited
See more »

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User Reviews

Recommended viewing.
18 January 2000 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

Historically accurate and meticulously researched, this is one of the genre of "federation-era" war productions in the 1980's by the Australian film industry. The high-quality movies and mini-series of this collection included such titles as "Breaker Morant", "Gallipoli" and "ANZACS", and one can see obvious similarities in the techniques and methodology used in their production. This, however, does not detract from their appeal or their entertainment value; quite the reverse, in fact. The formula for this genre was to take an historically-documented campaign and translate it as faithfully as possible to the big screen, with emphasis on characterisation, accuracy of detail and background.

The formula works, because the characters are believable, and the situations, events and settings have been faithfully re-created. Much of the background and information for this genre came from personal diaries and military archives preserved over the years, which adds credence to the plots, the action and the stories.

"The Lighthorsemen" highlights the campaign of the Australian mounted rifles in the North Africa battleground of the Great War, and culminates with the last successful action of horse-riding troops in combat. Without giving away the story too much, the taking of Beersheba in the closing days of 1918 was a decisive event in military history, and the screen portrayal of this action will have you on the edge of your seat.

Masterful performances by Jon Blake, Shane Briant and Bill Kerr (all veterans of this movie formula,) the attention to detail, the drama, and the occasional humour make for a very entertaining movie. It's recommended viewing.


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