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The Wild Geese (1978)

A British banker hires a group of British mercenaries to rescue a deposed African President from the hands of a corrupt African dictator.

Director:

Andrew V. McLaglen

Writers:

Reginald Rose (screenplay), Daniel Carney (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Burton ... Colonel Allen Faulkner
Roger Moore ... Lt. Shawn Fynn
Richard Harris ... Capt. Rafer Janders
Hardy Krüger ... Lt. Pieter Coetzee (as Hardy Kruger)
Stewart Granger ... Sir Edward Matherson
Winston Ntshona ... President Julius Limbani
John Kani ... Sgt. Jesse Link
Jack Watson ... R.S.M. Sandy Young
Frank Finlay ... Father Geoghagen
Kenneth Griffith Kenneth Griffith ... Arthur Witty
Barry Foster ... Thomas Balfour
Ronald Fraser ... Jock McTaggart
Ian Yule ... Tosh Donaldson
Patrick Allen ... Rushton
Rosalind Lloyd ... Heather
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Storyline

A British multinational seeks to overthrow a vicious dictator in central Africa. It hires a band of (largely aged) mercenaries in London and sends them in to save the virtuous but imprisoned opposition leader. Written by Richard Young <richy@vnu.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

bird | fowl | value | operative | troop | See All (173) »

Taglines:

Soldiers of Fortune... Modern Musketeers. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Switzerland | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 November 1978 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Los gansos salvajes See more »

Filming Locations:

Tshipise, Limpopo, South Africa See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,423,104, 31 December 1978
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (London premiere print)| Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor) (uncredited)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A seventeenth century Irish mercenary Army, named The Wild Geese, provided the inspiration for this film's title. The losing side of the Glorious Revolution of 1688 (the toppling of King James the 2nd by his son-in-law/nephew William of Orange and daughters Queen Mary and Queen Anne resulting in parliamentary democracy, the Act of Toleration, Bill of Rights and constitutional monarchy) they were offered amnesty on condition of leaving the British Isles as part of the Treaty of Limerick. Whilst departing they saw a flight of wild geese heading south for the winter and adopted them as their emblem, subsequently hiring themselves out as a mercenary army to the highest bidder. 1960s mercenary leader 'Mad' Mike Hoare would later adopt the symbol of the wild geese as the emblem of his mercenary soldiers serving in the Congo. See more »

Goofs

During the final battle, hundreds of shooters fire thousands of rounds at each other, yet not a single person is seen reloading. See more »

Quotes

Lt. Shawn Fynn: [referring to the radio callsigns for his men and for their transport aircraft] Iron Man,Wild Goose! Sounds like a finger up a tin man's backside,doesn't it?
See more »

Alternate Versions

NBC edited 12 minutes from this film for its 1982 network television premiere. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ban the Sadist Videos! (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Flight of the Wild Geese
Written and Performed by Joan Armatrading
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Thanks to all who enjoyed my film
17 November 2004 | by euan-6See all my reviews

It is not often a producer has the chance to thank his critics in this form. I do so now. The blood-sweat and tears that went into the making of THE WILD GEESE is all forgotten. Appreciation of one's endeavors of some 25 years ago, thanks to DVD, is gratefully received. The Zone 1 version is yet to appear, the lateness due to sloppy distribution. To answer questions about the film's very limited theatrical release in the United States and Canada in 1978, this was due solely to the financial collapse of its distributor, Allied Artists. Chapter II was applied and, to my disgust, it failed to reach many theaters. However, the NBC Network and HBO aired the movie with great success. Euan Lloyd.


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