6.4/10
2,514
27 user 9 critic

March or Die (1977)

During the 1920s, French Foreign Legion Major William Foster's unit is protecting an archaeological dig, but the discovery of an Arab sacred burial site prompts the angry Arab tribes to attack Foster's small garrison.

Director:

Writers:

(story), (story) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Mr. Billion (1977)
Drama | Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

When an American billionaire dies, his poor Italian nephew inherits everything, provided he can arrive in the USA to claim his inheritance before the deadline but the corporate lawyer-executor tries to steal the inheritance.

Director: Jonathan Kaplan
Stars: Terence Hill, Valerie Perrine, Jackie Gleason
Action | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A priest helps the small town he's stationed in to resolve conflicts by working together.

Director: Terence Hill
Stars: Terence Hill, Colin Blakely, Mimsy Farmer
Thriller | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A Vietnam War veteran, imprisoned for murder, is offered his freedom if he accepts to undertake a contract killing for a shady organization.

Director: Stanley Kramer
Stars: Gene Hackman, Candice Bergen, Richard Widmark
Zandy's Bride (1974)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

An American settler marries an European mail-order bride and together they learn how to thrive in the harsh wilderness while working on their relationship too.

Director: Jan Troell
Stars: Gene Hackman, Liv Ullmann, Eileen Heckart
Comedy | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Three rogues set out to rob $300,000 from an Indian-hating cavalry major.

Director: Damiano Damiani
Stars: Terence Hill, Miou-Miou, Robert Charlebois
Action | Comedy | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In the Wild West, a dead Englishman's greenhorn son joins his father's old gang and becomes a real frontier-man.

Director: Enzo Barboni
Stars: Terence Hill, Gregory Walcott, Yanti Somer
Under Fire (1983)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Three journalists in a romantic triangle are involved in political intrigue during the last days of the corrupt Somozoa regime in Nicaragua before it falls to a popular revolution in 1979.

Director: Roger Spottiswoode
Stars: Nick Nolte, Ed Harris, Gene Hackman
Org (1979)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Explores the complex relationship between the spirit, body, and mind. The film is a nightmare with closed eyes because it counts among the most terrible moments of my life, my second exile,... See full summary »

Director: Fernando Birri
Stars: Terence Hill, Lidija Juracik, Isaac Twen Obu
Action | Adventure | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A group of ex-rough riders, an ex-prostitute and a gunfighter enter a horse race in the desert.

Director: Richard Brooks
Stars: Gene Hackman, Candice Bergen, James Coburn
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Luisa Latin, betrayed by her husband, is imprisoned for the murder of her husband's mistress - who is still alive. When Luisa is released from prison, she kills her.

Director: Eriprando Visconti
Stars: Terence Hill, Martin Balsam, Paola Pitagora
Crime Busters (1977)
Action | Comedy | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An attempted robbery turns to be an unexpected recruitment when two unemployed men mistakenly break into a police office instead of a store.

Director: Enzo Barboni
Stars: Terence Hill, Bud Spencer, David Huddleston
Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

This western is set in Valencia, Spain at the end of the 19th century, and stars Terence Hill as a close-mouthed gunslinger. The bad guy is the local landlord and aristocrat (Fernando Rey),... See full summary »

Director: Mario Camus
Stars: Terence Hill, Maria Grazia Buccella, Mario Pardo
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Maj. William Sherman Foster
... Marco Segrain
... Simone Picard
... Francois Marneau
... El Krim
... Ivan
... Sgt. Triand
... Lt. Fontaine
... Top Hat
Paul Sherman ... Fred Hastings
... Mean Corporal
... Leon
Luigi Bonos ... Andre (as Gigi Bonos)
... First German
Matthias Hell ... Second German (as Mathias Hell)
Edit

Storyline

Foreign Legion Major Foster (Hackman), an American haunted by his memories of the recently-ended Great War, is assigned to protect a group of archaeologists at their dig. Foster's unit includes the charming, thieving rascal Marco (Hill), who joined the Legion only to avoid prison. After long stretches portraying the boredom and hardship of day-to-day life in the Legion, Foster's command occupies a small village where the archaeologists believe they've found a burial site sacred to the Arabs. An Arab leader (Holm) uses this affront to unite the tribes in Jihad, and attacks the tiny Legion garrison at the dig. An epic battle follows, very reminiscent of the film "Zulu". Costumes, firearms, and props are all very authentic-looking, and show great attention to detail. Written by Cameron Fairchild <fairchop@ix.netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The magnificent story of every courageous man who has ever gone out to face death and every brave woman who has ever waited for him to return. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 September 1977 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Marchar o morir  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$9,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Gene Hackman had been experiencing pains in his back. The film's insurance company refused to allow the shooting to continue because a permanent injury to Hackman could have cost it a lot of money. The insurers suggested shooting the film somewhere in the deserts of the United States. But the color of the sand dunes in Agadir is not the same as the color of the sand in Nevada. Several big American transport planes were used to transport tons of sand from the Agadir dunes in order to camouflage the sand of Nevada. (Source: Beyond Casablanca, Page 131). See more »

Goofs

The Legion uses French military equipment and customs. Yet in one scene, when the new recruits are awakened one morning, an American bugle call (reveille) is used. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[a battered group of legionares marched through a train station, while the crowd chanted the French national anthem; the first actual lines are about 4 minutes within the movie]
Sgt. Triand: [to a line of German prisioners] If you join the French Foreign Legion, remember: there are no questions asked. Come! Join the Legion!
See more »

Connections

Version of Legionnaire (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Le Boudin
(uncredited)
Music by Guillaume-Louis Wilhelm
The offical song of the French Foreign Legion.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
"The legion is my army now".
20 April 2013 | by See all my reviews

No questions asked. Join the legion. "March or Die" is a commendably sprawling old-fashion action adventure with plenty of spirit and a touch of romance (where Hill would do some striking carriage jumping to encounter the lovely Deneuve), which is crisply directed by Dick Richards. At the end of World War One, a division of the French foreign legion led by Major Foster is ordered to protect an archaeological dig, as the last expedition was slaughtered by the Arabs. Foster despises the orders, but must follow them and this excites the wrath of Arab leader El Krim who uses this to unite all the tribes to lead an attack on the foreigners.

For these types of films, it offers no real surprises but does grip and bestow some powerful sequences and vivid local colour. The talented cast acquit themselves very well. Gene Hackman gives a well rounded performance, rather harden and solemn, but a major who does care for his men. Terence Hill brings charm to his carefree role as the newly enlisted legionnaire. The rapport he shares with the cast is simply spellbinding; especially with his fellow rag-tag legionnaires and his athletic abilities provided much amusement. The classy Max Von Sydow shows up as an idealistic archaeologist and turning the men's heads was the delectably headstrong Catherine Deneuve. A polite sounding Ian Holm brings a great deal of intensity as the powerful Arab leader trying to invoke religious fanaticism. Also Jack O'Halloran has his moments.

The plot's build-up is slow and melancholy, but concise which gave time for different story arches and characters to open up, albeit in a clichéd manner. Watching Hackman's Major and Hill's legionnaire respectably going at each other in a battle of wits was basic, but nonetheless harsh and effective. Sometimes trying to get your message across, does come at a price. After a talky set-up and then the boot- training, it got to business. The action is fairly one-note, but still with some sting as its kept for a cracking finale where against the odds the legionnaires find themselves up against waves upon waves of advancing Arabs wanting nothing but their blood. Also it's beautifully shot capturing the grand scope of the production with all details covered from the sets to the costumes.

"In the legion you march or die".


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 27 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page