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Author Topic: The Raid (1954)  (Read 510 times)
Spikeopath
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« on: February 20, 2017, 11:43:07 AM »

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047388/reference

With a rebel yell, I cried more more more.

"This is a true story...it began on the night of September 26 1864, in a Union prison stockade at Plattsburgh, New York, not many miles from the Canadian border."

Tho director Hugo Fregonese's The Raid opens with the above written statement, it's not entirely accurate. Further research into what became known as "The St. Albans Raid" is required if you want the complete and unembellished story. However, The Raid is in structure and plot significantly in line with what happened back there in 1864. Lifting from the story entitled "Affair At St. Albans" by Herbert Ravenal Sass, The Raid is about seven Confederate prison escapees who infiltrate the community of St. Albans and plot a second front. As the town is gleefully praising General Sherman's march towards Savannah - and throwing auctions to sell off mementos of slain "Rebel" soldiers, the "Rebs" are fashioning bottles of "Greek Fire" with which to torch the town as they plunder the bank of all the town money.

Naturally all doesn't go to plan, as an on the edge soldier puts a spanner in the works; and the "Reb" leader, Maj. Neal Benton (aka Neal Swayze), finds a conflict of interest as his relationship with Katie Bishop and her son starts to form. All of which helps to make The Raid an engrossing picture outside of its already high interest point for being a "Confederate" movie (how many can you name about the "Rebs" winning for example?). More so when one knows that the film doesn't revert to genre formula, it threatens to, but Fregonese and his crew are not interested in serving up standard fare, with the ending a particular point of reference to ram home that opinion.

Van Heflin is excellent as Benton/Swayze, put this along side his work in other Western outings like Shane and 3:10 To Yuma, and he surely is a candidate for the genre's most undervalued actor award. Watch as he has to suppress various forms of emotion - anger as the town around him rejoices in his fellow countrymen's misfortune -  affection as he gets close to the mother and son, and torn as he ultimately must abide by his war driven codes. A fine turn from a very fine actor. Anne Bancroft is suitably bright eyed and deep down strong as Katie, while Richard Boone does a nice line as the troubled, and limb absent Captain in desperate need of redemption. Lee Marvin, Claude Akins (uncredited) and Peter Graves man up the support cast, and a nod of approval is warranted for young Tommy Rettig as Larry Bishop.

Filmed on location at Iverson Ranch, Chatsworth, Los Angeles, California, I find myself once again searching for superlatives about Lucien Ballard's cinematography. This is a "gorgeous" film to look at, the Technicolor crisp in tone as the brown and orange hues of St. Albans play host to the shimmering blues of the soldiers uniforms, all of course about to be engulfed by the crackling spurts of the raiders incendiary use of "Greek Fire". I fell in love with this movie quite early on in proceedings, come the finale, I knew I just had to have it in my own collection, I can only hope that this picture finds a new audience from which to give it the love it dearly deserves. 9/10

Viewed from Spanish DVD - Own Collection.

« Last Edit: February 20, 2017, 12:21:06 PM by Spikeopath » Logged

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AlamoScout210
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« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2017, 12:02:45 PM »

I like this one too although it's little tough to  see a favorite actor like Van in this role as the antagonist. He played it almost too good. He makes me want to sympathize with his character even though his intentions are less than savory.

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« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2017, 12:23:56 PM »

I like this one too although it's little tough to  see a favorite actor like Van in this role as the antagonist. He played it almost too good. He makes me want to sympathize with his character even though his intentions are less than savory.

That's why his performance is so good, his conflict of interest matches our own!

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« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2017, 01:22:55 PM »

Gonna have to give this a look when i can because of Van Heflin.  I'm liking the movies he played in...

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« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2017, 02:56:11 PM »

 I saw this like five years ago, I think on Fox Movie Channel. I remember liking it back then

 This is really not a western. It is set in New England. Somehow, because of the Civil War,  it feels like a Western. If this is a Western, it is the easternmost Western that there is  Angry

IMO it should not be in Western category. Others may disagree

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« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2017, 01:48:00 AM »

I understand that people do doubt the western status of this civil war film, but for me it feels like a western.

It has an unusual story for a 50s western, but its handling is not consequent enough. Still interesting. 6 or maybe even 7/10

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« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2017, 04:06:25 AM »

I saw this like five years ago, I think on Fox Movie Channel. I remember liking it back then

 This is really not a western. It is set in New England. Somehow, because of the Civil War,  it feels like a Western. If this is a Western, it is the easternmost Western that there is  Angry

IMO it should not be in Western category. Others may disagree

It's a borderline if anything. It was all filmed in Culver City, and Lake Sherwood, California, so ipso facto western with a small "w".

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« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2017, 11:42:29 AM »


IMO it should not be in Western category. Others may disagree

It's always a bone of contention, that of what constitutes a Western as per geography. I think by and large most embrace Southerns, Easterns and Civil War et al as part of the world. Certainly I myself was at pains during host duties on the Western board at IMDb to state that these genre splicers were most welcome in the spirit of horse and gun operas. We have it here in the index section, which is weighty with "non official" Western entries...

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« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2017, 11:47:46 AM »

How does a Civil War movie that takes place in New England - way in the northeastern United States - qualify as a western by any definition?

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« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2017, 11:59:06 AM »

How does a Civil War movie that takes place in New England - way in the northeastern United States - qualify as a western by any definition?

Blimey!

If it bothers you that much DD have it removed from the index. I'll then get out my spinning globe and see what other films in the index should be erased...

 Evil

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« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2017, 12:47:45 PM »

Blimey!

If it bothers you that much DD have it removed from the index. I'll then get out my spinning globe and see what other films in the index should be erased...

 Evil

I don't remove films from indexes. (As I said previously, moderators around here are not control freaks. We basically just tend to administrative tasks. Stuff is informal around here Wink )  we're just having a good old-fashioned movie debate, that's all Wink

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« Reply #11 on: February 24, 2017, 12:54:30 PM »

I don't remove films from indexes. (As I said previously, moderators around here are not control freaks. We basically just tend to administrative tasks. Stuff is informal around here Wink )  we're just having a good old-fashioned movie debate, that's all Wink

I think you should be removed from admin duties, you are clearly a despotic type  Tongue

You know I meant no malice old bean?

The Raid kicks ass anyway and deserves to be up front on any forum. Right I'm off to watch The Great Silence for the first time and then follow it up with The Hateful Eight. The latter of which I'm sure would have provoked interesting posts here...

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« Reply #12 on: February 24, 2017, 03:33:43 PM »

Well, just look at the list of Jesse & Frank James robberies most occurred West of the Mississippi, but five took place East of the Mississippi, Columbia Kentucky, Huntington, West Virginia, Mammoth Cave, Kentucky, Mercer, Kentucky, and Muscle Shoals, Alabama Payroll Robbery.

The James - Younger Gang activity

Liberty, Missouri Bank Robbery
Lexington, Missouri Bank Robbery
Russellville, Kentucky Bank Robbery
Gallatin, Missouri Bank Robbery
Corydon, Iowa Bank Robbery
Columbia, Kentucky Bank Robbery
Kansas City, Missouri Exposition Robbery
Ste. Genevieve Bank Robbery
Adair, Iowa Train Robbery
Hot Springs, Arkansas Stagecoach Robbery
Gad's Hill, Missouri Train Robbery
Bentonville, Arkansas Store Robbery
Austin, Texas Stagecoach Robbery
Muncie, Kansas Train Robbery
Huntington, West Virginia Bank Robbery
Baxter Springs, Kansas Bank Robbery
Otterville, Missouri Train Robbery
Northfield, Minnesota Bank Robbery

The James Gang activity

Glendale, Missouri Train Robbery
Mammoth Cave, Kentucky Stagecoach Robbery
Mercer, Kentucky Payroll Robbery
Muscle Shoals, Alabama Payroll Robbery
Winston, Missouri Train Robbery
Blue Cut, Missouri Train Robbery

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Spikeopath
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« Reply #13 on: February 24, 2017, 03:44:54 PM »

Well, just look at the list of Jesse & Frank James robberies most occurred West of the Mississippi, but five took place East of the Mississippi, Columbia Kentucky, Huntington, West Virginia, Mammoth Cave, Kentucky, Mercer, Kentucky, and Muscle Shoals, Alabama Payroll Robbery.

The James - Younger Gang activity

Liberty, Missouri Bank Robbery
Lexington, Missouri Bank Robbery
Russellville, Kentucky Bank Robbery
Gallatin, Missouri Bank Robbery
Corydon, Iowa Bank Robbery
Columbia, Kentucky Bank Robbery
Kansas City, Missouri Exposition Robbery
Ste. Genevieve Bank Robbery
Adair, Iowa Train Robbery
Hot Springs, Arkansas Stagecoach Robbery
Gad's Hill, Missouri Train Robbery
Bentonville, Arkansas Store Robbery
Austin, Texas Stagecoach Robbery
Muncie, Kansas Train Robbery
Huntington, West Virginia Bank Robbery
Baxter Springs, Kansas Bank Robbery
Otterville, Missouri Train Robbery
Northfield, Minnesota Bank Robbery

The James Gang activity

Glendale, Missouri Train Robbery
Mammoth Cave, Kentucky Stagecoach Robbery
Mercer, Kentucky Payroll Robbery
Muscle Shoals, Alabama Payroll Robbery
Winston, Missouri Train Robbery
Blue Cut, Missouri Train Robbery


I actually think you may well be related to one of those bad boys  Evil

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