This film violates two important rules of documentary making. First, the narrator should have a script and not just talk off the cuff. Rarely does this approach work and here it just seemed to to fall flat. Second, and probably more importantly, try to be sober. Here, Flynn is a mess--only a short time before he died due to the effects of acute alcoholism.
Now you can't simply blame the alcoholism for Flynn would make a film extolling the virtues of a dictator. Such love for Castro is certainly not unique in Hollywood--though at least in Flynn's defense, many at the time did not realize what sort of leader Castro would become. They had visions of a free press and freedom of speech--two things promised in the People's Revolution.
Aside from an opening speech,a brief segment in the middle and end in which we see Flynn ramble a bit in front of a cheap set, the rest of the film is pretty shabby. It consists of all kinds of stock footage strung together and narration with an unseen man narrating who obviously is NOT Flynn--though the man pretends that he is! Apparently, Flynn died before the film was completed and some dummy thought they could fool the audience with the strong endorsement of Castro by the faux Flynn! I really think they should have kept the intro (despite its limitations) and just admitted that it was not Flynn narrating. But instead, the narrator talks about "my good friend George Raft" and plays it all very straight. Too bad, as some of the footage and narration is pretty good--even if it is a great big slobbering kiss for Fidel because of its hyperbolic and rather unprofessional style. It really doesn't seem like a documentary, but more like a propaganda piece because of its lack of objectivity and manner in which the film condones the widespread executions following the fall of the Batista government--including footage of an execution (both the events leading up to it and the actual killing). That was just nasty.
Overall, mostly of interest to die-hard Castro, Che Guevara (who is also highly praised in the film) or Flynn fans. Otherwise, most will probably be misled by its false message of hope or bored with the film, as it is pretty dry. An odd curio and that is all--and a poorly made one to boot.
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