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Films of Sergio Leone => Other Films => Topic started by: cigar joe on September 13, 2006, 06:28:17 PM



Title: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: cigar joe on September 13, 2006, 06:28:17 PM
on TCM right now starting at 8PM  EST


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: Tim on September 14, 2006, 01:49:30 PM
  I've seen Horse Soldiers and Escape from Fort Bravo and enjoyed both of them.  Haven't seen Texas but I'd be willing to give it a shot.

  The one I was interested in seeing was "The Wild Rovers" with Holden and Ryan O'Neal.  Kind of a buddy western with Holden playing the grizzled old cowboy to O'Neal's inexperienced youngster of a cowboy.  TCM's website had a trailer, and it looked interesting, probably worth a watch if nothing else.  Did anyone catch it last nite?


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: Sackett on September 14, 2006, 04:35:08 PM
Saw the first part of Texas last night.  Robert Osbourne said Holden did the film when he was 22.  His friend Ford was 24.  I didn't get to watch the whole thing, but will try again another time.   I would also like to see Holden's Arizona one day as well.
The Wild Rovers is a good western.  The scenery is beautiful.  I 've seen this one a couple of times and would watch it again.  I won't spoil it by telling the ending.


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: cigar joe on September 14, 2006, 04:58:58 PM
I recorded Texas & Escape, watched the end of Texas this morning, it was a buddy flick where one goes good the other goes bad and they are both in love with the same woman (Clare Trevor) typical late 40's 50's type Western. Edgar Buchanon does a good jod a a crooked dentist/crime lord.


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: Groggy on September 14, 2006, 05:01:12 PM
The only one of those I've seen is "The Horse Soldiers".  It's basically a Western despite the setting (Civil War-era Mississippi), Holden and Wayne are both excellent, though the Duke's romance with Constance Powers (or whatever her name is) is forced.  The battle scenes are very well-done, particularly the ambush from the railcar.


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: cigar joe on September 14, 2006, 05:24:28 PM
Yea HS is a good flick based on an actual cavalry raid by Gierson in 1863 while Grant was laying siege to Vicksburg.


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: Groggy on September 14, 2006, 05:40:55 PM
But very, very loosely. . .


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: Sackett on September 16, 2006, 07:34:37 PM
Part of Horse Soldiers was filmed about a mile from where I live at the Jefferson Military College.  I was there today and wondered again about the history that is so close around me.  I don't mean cinema history either.


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: Groggy on September 17, 2006, 05:43:01 AM
Well the scene with the cadets charging the cavalry was based, again loosely, on the Battle of New Market in May 1864, when cadets from the VMI successfully defeated Union troops.  Then again, the Yanks were under the command of Franz Sigel, who was about the worst general the Union Army ever fielded, but still, quite an accomplishment considering their age.


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: Groggy on September 15, 2009, 03:53:48 PM
I've seen parts of Escape From Fort Bravo, I've never gotten to watch it the whole way through. Mostly it was interesting to see how much Major Dundee (and GBU arguably) borrowed from it.


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: T.H. on September 15, 2009, 05:19:22 PM
Is it worth watching? I've had a couple chances but passed.


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: drinkanddestroy on March 06, 2011, 05:43:24 PM
I just saw The Horse Soldiers (1959)(rented from iTunes)

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0052902/

SPOILER ALERT:

I absolutely love the movie; the war sequences and the scenery were all wonderful, and I always love military music!

There is one thing in this movie that I hate: when at the end, Wayne says to Towers  "I'm in love with you."
Although the Wayne and Towers characters clearly disliked each other throughout the movie, it is understandable that over time the hatred would dissipate, and perhaps they would even grow to respect each other somewhat. However, the "love" part was just bullshit. And I was so annoyed, cuz throughout the movie I kept thinking "Please, John Ford, have the guts to avoid the Hollywood cliche where everything has to turn into a love story." But I guess that was too much to ask from an American director.

Other than that one line, this was a wonderful movie. John Wayne and William Holden are terrific.

Note: "John Ford suspended location filming in Louisiana after veteran stuntman Fred Kennedy was killed performing a riding stunt. Filming was later completed in California."
http://www.tcm.com/tcmdb/title.jsp?stid=3658&category=Trivia (according to wikipedia, the final film uses the shot on which the stuntman died. Also, because Ford was so distraught over the death and wanted to end the movie as quickly as possible, the movie was cut short, so we never actually see the cavalry complete their mission on to Baton Rouge; we just see them escape over the bridge, and it is assumed that they will complete their mission http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Horse_Soldiers#Production

Also, I gotta disagree with Groggy; this is totally a Civil War movie. IMO the only reason people consider this a Western is that it is a Ford & Wayne movie


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: T.H. on March 08, 2011, 07:11:15 PM
I prefer this over Fort Apache and 'Yellow Ribbon'

What were you thinking me from a year and a half ago?


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: uncknown on January 15, 2012, 11:37:26 AM
  I've seen Horse Soldiers and Escape from Fort Bravo and enjoyed both of them.  Haven't seen Texas but I'd be willing to give it a shot.

  The one I was interested in seeing was "The Wild Rovers" with Holden and Ryan O'Neal.  Kind of a buddy western with Holden playing the grizzled old cowboy to O'Neal's inexperienced youngster of a cowboy.  TCM's website had a trailer, and it looked interesting, probably worth a watch if nothing else.  Did anyone catch it last nite?

I just watched the Warner DVD-R.
Some folks on this board will no doubt enjoy it, but i thought it was a total turkey.
Shouldn't this be listed in the INDEX OF AMERICAN WESTERNS?


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: drinkanddestroy on April 12, 2013, 03:50:43 AM
watched The Horse Soldiers again tonight; 2nd viewing, first time on blu-ray.

The blu ray does a nice job. It has a lot of grain, so for you purists who like grain, I am sure you will like this image.
If you compare the image with the trailer (which I am sure is unrestored quality; but is the only bonus feature on this disc), you will see that much of the feature is a lot darker than the trailer. So, was the feature artificially darkened; or has the trailer faded over time, or some combination thereof? Who knows. But I had no complaints about the disc quality; just a complaint about the lack of bonus features, other than the trailer.  This is a damn good movie, with Wayne and Holden directed by Ford, and deserved a commentary and several bonus feature pieces.

As for the actual movie, my opinion is basically the same as the last time I watched it, discussed a few posts back.

Constance Towers looks lovely, but I WISH they hadn't succumbed to Hollywood cliche with Wayne telling Towers he loved her. I wish they would have just shaken hands at the end and that's all. Maybe a hug and a look in the eye. But saying he loves her, just typical Holllywood crap.

Otherwise, this was a very good movie. I mean, Wayne, Holden, Towers, you've got a nice color movie with the US cavalry and playing military music on the soundtrack -- how  could you go wrong! This gets a solid 8/10. IMO, it is the 6th best Ford Western; the top 5 (in no particular order) are Stagecoach, My Darling Clementine, Fort Apache, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, and The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance


Title: Re: Horse Soldiers, Texas, Escape from Fort Bravo
Post by: Groggy on April 16, 2013, 07:20:19 PM
Quote
John Ford's Civil War adventure feels like it should be a lot better. The Horse Soldiers (1959) is beautifully shot, with John Wayne and William Holden making a dynamic star pairing. But the movie never quite gels, a disappointing collection of exciting action and awkward drama.

In spring 1863, Union and Confederate armies are deadlocked before Vicksburg, the Rebels' last stronghold on the Mississippi. General Ulysses S. Grant (Stan Jones) recruits Colonel John Marlowe (John Wayne) to lead a daring raid on Confederate supply lines. Marlowe plans to ride from La Grange, Tennessee down to Newton Station, destroy the supply depot there, then continue south to Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The mission grows complicated when the Federals encounter Hanna Hunter (Constance Towers), a headstrong Southerner they arrest for fear of informing, and when Marlowe and his surgeon Major Kendall (William Holden) grow to loathe each other.

Based on Harold Sinclair's novel, The Horse Soldiers is a heavily fictionalized version of Grierson's Raid. At a time when the Union cavalry was a laughingstock ("Whoever saw a dead cavalryman?" went a rueful joke), Colonel Benjamin Grierson led 1,700 troopers on a daring raid that cut Rebel supply lines to Vicksburg, tied up thousands of Rebel troops and safely arrived in Baton Rouge with few casualties. These scratch Yankee horsemen put Southern cavalrymen like Nathan Bedford Forrest to shame, and materially aided Grant's campaign too. It's a fascinating tale of true-life derringdo tailor made for a movie.

The Horse Soldiers is certainly a handsome movie. Ford provides striking iconography, with beautiful shots of cavalry columns on the horizon, all captured by ace photographer William C. Clothier. Ford consciously recalls Matthew Brady's photographs, with carefully composed camp scenes and sweeping battle tableaux: one early scene even has Marlowe and staff photographed by a war correspondent. Ford stages two fabulous battles, especially the ambush at Newton Station, alongside colorful vignettes: a confrontation with two Confederate deserters (Strother Martin and Denver Pyle); Kendall chatting with a friendly Rebel colonel (Carleton Young); and a humorous episode where the Yankees encounter teenaged military cadets (loosely inspired by the Battle of New Market, Virginia).

Ford takes his only direct stab at America's biggest conflict (vignettes in Judge Priest and How the West Was Won notwithstanding), with commendable complexity. Ford consistently emphasizes the "gentlemanly" conduct of both sides. Marlowe's troops kill no civilians (accurate to Grierson's raid), care for Rebel wounded and bloodlessly disengage from the underage cadets. Yet this chivalry is contrasted with chaotic battles, Kendall's bloody operations and scenes of material destruction. Kendall proves the noblest character, putting aside nationality to treat wounded on both sides. Not quite an antiwar tract, The Horse Soldiers nonetheless eschews predictable flag-waving.

Then why isn't The Horse Soldiers a classic? Despite its quality set pieces, Ford's interstitial material rings consistently false. The central Marlowe-Kendall rivalry between never seems authentic; writers John Lee Mahin and Martin Rackin give Marlowe a cringeworthy personal reason for hating doctors. No points for guessing how they patch things up. Similarly, headstrong Hannah falls for Marlowe simply because box office demands it. That's neglecting annoying side characters like the Victor McLaglen-lite Sergeant Kirby (Judson Pratt) and Marlowe's Lt. Colonel (Willis Bouchey), who reminds us he's a politician every time he's on screen. The finale also feels rushed, thanks to the death of stuntman Fred Kennedy.

John Wayne and William Holden redeem a lot. These tough guy leads have great chemistry, selling their thin characters and hokey rivalry through sheer charisma. Constance Towers (Sergeant Rutledge) is compelling early on as a resourceful Southern belle; later she deteriorates into token love interest. Willis Bouchey and tennis star Althea Gibson play annoying one-note roles. Strother Martin and Denver Pyle get one of the best scenes as scurvy Rebel deserters; Ford regulars Ken Curtis, Hank Worden, Russell Simpson, Anna Lee and Carleton Young put in mandatory appearances.

The Horse Soldiers is an entertaining flick, but seems like a missed opportunity. There's plenty to like, but Ford's mixed execution makes it merely a good picture. 7/10

http://nothingiswrittenfilm.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-horse-soldiers.html (http://nothingiswrittenfilm.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-horse-soldiers.html)