(1978/Severin DVD, standard edition)
B- Sound: C+ Extras: B+ Film: B
is a outlandish British 1978 adventure film directed by Andrew V.
McLaglen about a group of aging mercenaries that are hired by a
wealthy industrialist for one final mission - to recruit and train a
squad of desperate commandos, parachute into an unstable African
nation, snatch its deposed President from a maximum security prison,
escape via the military controlled airport, and massacre anyone who
stands in their way. Sounds pretty impossible right?
for us, the film stars legendary actors Richard Burton, Roger Moore,
Richard Harris and Hardy Krüger. The film was the result of a
long-held ambition of its producer Euan Lloyd to make an all-star
adventure film similar to The
Guns of Navarone
and was based on an unpublished novel titled The
Thin White Line
by Daniel Carney. The film was a box office flop in the U.S. back in
1978 but did decently in Britain and oversees, hence why you may not
have heard of it until now (I hadn't.)
let the lack of mystery deter you though, the film is full of great
action and some charm not to mention plenty of blood and guts to keep
modern audiences entertained. Its surprising to me that Stallone and
Schwarzenegger haven't tried to remake this film yet!
this is a DVD release, the sound and picture quality are pretty
standard for the format - presented in standard definition,
anamorphically enhanced widescreen aspect ratio of 1.85:1. Sound on
the disc is a lossy Dolby Digital 2.0 track that is nothing to really
commend or write home about. Total running time for the film clocks
in around 129 minutes in length.
are plentiful for a single disc release though - An
exclusive new interview with the Director Andrew V. McLaglen, New
Interview with Military advisor Mike Hoare, The Last of the Gentlemen
Producers Documentary, Audio Commentary by Producer Euan Lloyd, Roger
Moore, and the second unit director of the film, a Vintage
Featurette, Premiere Newsreel, and a Theatrical Trailer.
that we have also covered this on Blu-ray and an anniversary DVD
edition elsewhere on this site.
James Harland Lockhart V