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Sharpe's Waterloo (1997)

Based on the novel by Bernard Cornwell, "Sharpe's Waterloo" brings maverick British officer Lt. Col. Richard Sharpe to his last fight against the French, in June of 1815. Sharpe is assigned... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Abigail Cruttenden ...
...
Cécile Paoli ...
...
...
Oliver Tobias ...
Rebeque
...
Uxbridge
Nicholas Irons ...
Martin Cochrane ...
Macduff
Jason Salkey ...
John Tams ...
Martin Glyn Murray ...
Doggett
...
Witherspoon
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Storyline

Based on the novel by Bernard Cornwell, "Sharpe's Waterloo" brings maverick British officer Lt. Col. Richard Sharpe to his last fight against the French, in June of 1815. Sharpe is assigned to the Prince of Orange's staff, and is rejoined with Sgt. Harper (retired) and riflemen Hagman and Harris at the famous battles of Quatre Bras and Waterloo. Not only must Sharpe deal with incompetent orders from the Prince of Orange, that lead to slaughter, he confronts his wife's lover, Lord Rossendale, in the midst of battle. The film climaxes as Wellington's small army 'holds the line' against Napolean's veteran Imperial Guard. Written by Derek Relf

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

TV-14 | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

26 August 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sharpe végső ütközete  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

In historical truth, the Prussians were indeed late to the battle, though that may have made all the difference. According to author Bernard Cornwell, if the Prussians had arrived on time, then Napoleon would most likely have backed out and would have fought another day. The way it happened, his army was far too involved to be pulled out, and Napoleon was utterly defeated. See more »

Goofs

Near the start of the battle Rossendale is issued with a new, straight-bladed sword (a 1796 Pattern Heavy Cavalry Sword, the same as Sharpe's). However, during the cavalry charge in which he participates soon afterwards, he appears - at least in long shots - to be using a sword with a curved blade. See more »

Quotes

Witherspoon: [taking out a notebook] What time?
Richard Sharpe: What?
Witherspoon: What time did it stop? The cannonade. I have it as ten minutes of midday, but the Duke likes it accurate, you see.
Richard Sharpe: What time is it now?
Witherspoon: Oh, uh...
[fumbles with his pocketwatch]
Witherspoon: Four minutes after midday, save a few...
Richard Sharpe: You'd best write down that they're coming, then.
Witherspoon: Coming?
Richard Sharpe: The French are advancing.
[...]
See more »

Connections

Follows Sharpe's Mission (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

Over the Hills and Far Away
Traditional
Lyrics adapted by John Tams
Performed by John Tams and Jason Salkey
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Rousing end to the Sharpe series
15 February 2005 | by (New York) – See all my reviews

Richard Sharpe fights the Battle of Waterloo. This is a dense, action-packed, fast-paced conclusion to the Sharpe series and a very worthy capstone. I'm tremendously sorry to see it end and would love to see more.

The producers stretched their TV budget to the limit in order to mount convincing battle scenes for the finale, with considerable success (although this series will never rival a Hollywood studio production). We are given enough information about Waterloo to appreciate the dramatic events and feel very much in the middle of the fighting. Sharpe is in fine form as are Harper, Harris, Hagman, Wellington, Lucille, Jane and Lord Rossendale, who are all present along with a slew of guest stars and faces from earlier in the series. Rossendale in particular gets a share of the spotlight and his character is developed in unexpected ways. The central plot device is that Sharpe has returned to the army and been assigned to the staff of Prince William of the Netherlands, but becomes disenchanted with the prince's incompetence and roams the battlefield saving the day hither and yon. It works.

I won't comment on the central issue of what becomes of Sharpe at the end except to say that there is a very moving and intelligent resolution of his military career.

The only negatives are: First, with so much action, so many characters and so many stories being concluded, the whole thing sometimes seems a bit dizzy. Second, the British accents are often very tough for American ears to decipher, and important dialogue and plot points can be missed. (This is a problem with the Sharpe series as a whole but here, with so much shouting and guns blazing in the background, the problem is magnified.)

There is one shot of Jane Sharpe in a negligee that is nothing less than awe-inspiring.

Highly recommended, as is the whole series. The Sharpe series will remind you at various times of War and Peace, For Whom the Bell Tolls, the Horatio Hornblower stories, Vanity Fair, The Dirty Dozen, The Red Badge of Courage and All Quiet on the Western Front.

P.S. - I can't help being puzzled at the over-the-top reactions to my comment about the British accents. I have no complaint about the accents (any more than I'd have a complaint about a character speaking French in a Truffaut film), so there's no need for outrage. I was simply warning U.S. viewers about the issue so they won't be surprised when they have to rewind to catch missed words. (And "British accents" is a perfectly proper collective shorthand expression for English, Scottish, Welsh, etc. accents. My source: Simon & Schuster College Dictionary (3d ed.).


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