Captain Fred Allison has been in a German Prisoner of War Camp for a long time. It has been two years since he last saw Monica, a girl he met, married and bought a house with in six days ... See full summary »
Roy Del Ruth
Douglas Fairbanks Jr.,
After killing an unknown man for an unknown reason, a mysterious drifter turns himself to the law, under a false name intending to protect his own family's honor. But when the news of his ... See full summary »
William K. Howard
Johnny Mack Brown
Young Danny leads an Army detail into a trap enabling his brother Steve and his gang to capture their load of gattling guns. Tim and Chito capture the brothers but don't find the guns. Tim ... See full summary »
A World War I British Army patrol is crossing the Mesopotomian desert when their commanding officer, the only one who knows their destination is killed by the bullet of unseen bandits. The patrol's sergeant keeps them heading north on the assumption that they will hit their brigade. They stop for the night at an oasis and awake the next morning to find their horses stolen, their sentry dead, the oasis surrounded and survival difficult.Written by
Erik Gregersen <email@example.com>
The release of the almost complete version on DVD allows viewers to compare it with the edited 1949 re-release. Eliminated in the shorter version is an early shot of Boris Karloff with a book of poetry about the desert, Paul Hanson's reminiscing about J.M. Kerrigan's and Alan Hale's earlier days in the service, and Victor McLaglen and Wallace Ford sharing cigarettes and recalling their wives and sweethearts. Apparently, a boxing match between Hale and Sammy Stein immediately following the death of Billy Bevan, before they all draw lots, is still missing. See more »
The Arabs must be crack shots. They rarely miss, and when they do hit no one is ever wounded, always killed. In at least one case, they appear to be shooting through a sand dune. See more »
I can't say much for the women though, but, oh, the girls! All Malayan females should be poisoned at 21. Before that, they're... Mmmmmm!
But a bit on the dark side, hunh, Brown?
Oh, yes, they're dark, but the longer you're there, the whiter they get, or that's the way it seems. That didn't bother me, Jock. I'll never forget the first time I saw... We sailed into a little harbor about sundown. The girls all came swimming out, flowere in their long hair, singing and laughing up at us from the ...
[...] See more »
There is a short version of the film, with a running time of 66 minutes, prepared for a 1949 reissue. See more »
This early John Ford "talkie" (1934) crams in a lot of action and tension in just over an hour. It's the kind of classic film that could stand a good remake considering the subject matter and today's headlines in the Middle East. The plot is simple but effective. A dozen British soldiers on patrol in the Mesopotamian desert are attacked by an unseen force of Arabs. Their commanding officer is killed by a sniper and he was the only person who had knowledge of their exact location in the endless arid landscape. With no hope for reinforcements, the remaining soldiers are soon stranded on an obscure oasis and picked off one-by-one. Victor McLaglen is superb as the ranking sergeant trying to hold his dwindling force together. Boris Karloff is excellent (albeit a bit "over the top") as a religious lunatic who attempts to "convert" his comrades and the enemy to no avail. Adding to the suspense, the bewildered soldiers never see their attackers. The film's larger message regarding the utter futility of war hangs over the proceedings like a funeral shroud---but never gets in the way of the action. The surprising and shattering ending to this tale is one of the most unforgettable moments in 1930s cinema. Ford went on to make bigger pictures, but not too many were better than this one.
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