7.5/10
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80 user 41 critic

The Four Feathers (1939)

A timid British Army officer has quit and burns his last day summons to a war in Egypt. Calling him a coward, his girl friend and 3 officer friends give him a white feather. In redemption, he shadows his friends in war to save their lives.

Director:

Zoltan Korda

Writers:

A.E.W. Mason (novel), R.C. Sherriff (screen play) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Clements John Clements ... Harry Faversham
Ralph Richardson ... Captain John Durrance
C. Aubrey Smith ... General Burroughs
June Duprez ... Ethne Burroughs
Allan Jeayes ... General Faversham
Jack Allen ... Lieutenant Willoughby
Donald Gray Donald Gray ... Peter Burroughs
Frederick Culley Frederick Culley ... Dr. Sutton
Clive Baxter Clive Baxter ... Young Harry Faversham
Robert Rendel ... Colonel
Archibald Batty Archibald Batty ... Adjutant
Derek Elphinstone Derek Elphinstone ... Lieutenant Parker
Hal Walters Hal Walters ... Joe
Norman Pierce Norman Pierce ... Sergeant Brown
Henry Oscar ... Dr. Harraz
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Storyline

Resigning his commission on the eve of his unit's deployment against Egyptian rebels, a British officer seeks to redeem his cowardice by secretly aiding his former comrades, disguised as an Arab. When his unit is overwhelmed and captured by the rebels, the hero finds an opportunity to return the "feathers" of cowardice sent to him by his former comrades by freeing them.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

ACTION! THRILLS! ROMANCE! (print ad - Lubbock Avalanche Journal - Lyric Theatre - Lubbock, Texas - April 22, 1945 - all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The action scenes, photographed by Osmond Borradaile, were not only filmed where the historical battles had taken place, but also included among the many extras, people who had witnessed or participated in the fighting more than forty years earlier. These battle scenes further benefitted from Director Zoltan Korda's expertise at large-scale action and his early experience as a cavalry officer. See more »

Goofs

As the Royal North Surrey Regiment is marching at their depot to receive orders to the Sudan, all but the officers are carrying a rifle in their right hand.

When they are told to 'stand at ease' in the next shot, none of the men have a rifle shown as they all clap in unison. See more »

Quotes

Harry Faversham: I am a coward, Doctor. If I'd been anything but a soldier I might have lived my whole life and concealed it. But to be a soldier *and* a coward is to be an impostor, a menace to the men whose lives are in your hands.
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Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: In 1885 the rebellious army of cruel dervishes enslaved and killed many thousands of defenceless natives in the Sudan, then laid siege to Khartoum. The scanty garrison's heroic commander, General Gordon appealed for help from England - but no help reached him. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Their Finest (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

The British Grenadiers
(uncredited)
Traditional
Heard during the departure of the second lot of troops
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User Reviews

Never disgrace the regiment
30 January 2004 | by mail-671See all my reviews

This is one of the best from the now happily recovered & preserved great Korda collection(for some years blocked by much litigation)when the huge Denham Studios were on a roll,having arisen from the embers of an earlier fire. Under the sheer dedication of the hungarian Kordas, they simply couldn't fail until in the middle of what must be their most popular hit, The Thief of Baghdad,they were forced to move to the US by the outbreak of WW2. Each brother has left much to posterity. Alex, the entrepreneur was subsequently knighted for his contribution to British films. In a fascinating but poignant BBC documentary of the 70s,on the great studio's rise & fall, Elizabeth Bergner {another European import) referred to him as "a prankster". This vividly technicolored remake is splendid adventure, its Sudan locations compare well with those of Lawrence of Arabia and as in "Thief" the object of my attention had to be the beautiful, husky young June Duprez.

As in Stanley Baker's "ZULU" these giant black warriors are fearsomely portrayed with the scenes inside the primitive prison where the "dumb" spy Harry Faversham eventually finds himself are quite grim. And as another reviewer has commented, crusty Sir Aubrey as ever is the perfect & amusing retired tactician at the start & finish. A glare from under those bushy eyebrows was always enough! Great entertainment.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 August 1939 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Four Feathers See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TCM print)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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