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The Black Shield of Falworth (1954)

Peasant Myles Falworth is trained for knighthood and is groomed by various nobles to defeat the evil Earl of Alban who's plotting to usurp King Henry IV's throne.

Director:

Rudolph Maté

Writers:

Oscar Brodney (screenplay), Howard Pyle (novel)
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tony Curtis ... Myles
Janet Leigh ... Lady Anne
David Farrar ... Gilbert Blunt - Earl of Alban
Barbara Rush ... Meg
Herbert Marshall ... William - Earl of Mackworth
Torin Thatcher ... Sir James
Dan O'Herlihy ... Prince Hal (as Daniel O'Herlihy)
Patrick O'Neal ... Walter Blunt
Craig Hill ... Francis Gascoyne
Ian Keith ... King Henry IV
Doris Lloyd ... Dame Ellen
Rhys Williams ... Diccon Bowman
Leonard Mudie ... Friar Edward
Maurice Marsac ... Count de Vermois
Leo Britt Leo Britt ... Sir Robert
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Storyline

Technicolor and tights. In the days of King Henry IV, stalwart young Myles of Crisby Dale, and his sister Meg, have been raised as peasants, without any knowledge of their father's true identity. They are sent Mackworth Castle by their foster father with a letter to Lord Mackworth, urging him to take in Myles and Meg as wards. There, Myles is smitten with Mackworth's daughter, Lady Anne, incurs the enmity of the chief knight-in-training, and is assigned by Lord Mackworth to train for knighthood, himself so that he may claim his birthright and assist Mackworth and the stalwart Prince Hal in defeating the evil Duke of Alban, who plots to usurp King Henry's throne. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A timeless story of Love, Honor and Glory. See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

2 September 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Men of Iron See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,171,750 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (magnetic prints) (Western Electric Recording)| Mono (Perspecta Sound encoding) (optical prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was Universal-International's first feature in CinemaScope. Whilst it was released in the widescreen format, it was not filmed in the new anamorphic process, but in standard 1:37 Academy ratio and then matted to 1:2.35 CinemaScope. See more »

Goofs

During the final battle, Myles gets a number of scuff marks on his shield from deflecting his enemy's mace blows. These damage marks appear and disappear between shots. See more »

Quotes

Myles Falworth: [Sir James instructs Myles to ride a horse among a series of pells - upright supports - with his hands over his head. When he fails, he complains to Sir James that he cannot control the horse] How is the horse supposed to know, unless he has more sense than I?
Sir James: A possibility not so remote as you might imagine.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: ENGLAND

In the reign of King Henry IV See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Founder (2016) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Uneasy Lies The Head That Wears The Crown
8 December 2007 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

The Black Shield of Falworth is the only other story I know that concerns itself with the time of Henry IV. He's played here by Ian Keith and the film like the Shakespeare plays about him concern efforts to topple him from his throne. But other than Prince Hal, played here by Dan O'Herlihy, the rest of the cast are fictional characters from a novel by Howard Pyle.

Young Tony Curtis and his sister Barbara Rush have been raised in the forest by Rhys Williams. They are in fact of noble birth, but Dad was accused of treason, his lands forfeited and his family under a death sentence.

They're sent still unaware of their identity to another nobleman's digs in this case Herbert Marshall's. Curtis trains first as a squire and then a knight by tough drill sergeant man at arms, Torin Thatcher. It's for the day he can challenge villain David Farrar and his equally villainous brother Patrick O'Neal for plotting against his father.

Of course Curtis also falls for his then real life wife Janet Leigh who O'Neal is also interested in.

The Black Shield of Falworth was the first Universal film in cinemascope and Universal was far more interested in the spectacle of the film than the story because they were competing with the small screen that was populating the homes of America. In his memoirs Tony Curtis says that the lack of interest in the story was all apparent, but that he did like working with director Rudolph Mate and his then wife Ms. Leigh.

Favorite in the film however has to be Torin Thatcher. You won't forget this rough and rugged old knight with a Rooster Cogburn eyepatch and a staff to support him walking. Still he's one tough old bird. Coming in second is David Farrar who is plotting to take the throne away from Ian Keith.

Which if you remember your Shakespeare was one that a lot of people felt he usurped from Richard II. So what we're watching The Black Shield of Falworth is just another reason why Ian Keith was not sleeping good at night.


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