Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Lighthorsemen (1987)

(Australian) War Movie #3

Synopsis: Snobby Brits get brave Australians killed, 1917 -  but that’s ok, because the Aussies single-handedly win the war in the Middle East. 

Blurb From the VHS Jacket: “1917. Palestine. The water-rich stronghold of Beersheba seems invincible, protected by thousands of German and Turkish soldiers – and by the blistering desert stretching eastward from the city.” 

What Did I Learn?: If you want to get the enemy to pick up, and fall for some bogus secret plans, place them alongside a heartfelt letter from home. 

Really?: Oh. My. God. Mario Millo, the film’s musical composer, should have been tied to one of those horses and dragged back-and-forth from Gaza to Beersheba. 

Rating: The Lighthorsemen isn’t an altogether bad movie, but it suffers in comparison to the much-better Gallipoli. The film can’t boast of any big-name actors, but it does include some rather impressive stunts near the end, and the characters are genuinely likeable. The Lighthorsemen’s biggest problem (aside from an atrociously over-the-top, and overpowering musical score – see: “Really?”) is that it never really knows if it wants to be an anti-war film like Gallipoli, or a rousing “Australia Rocks!” crowd-pleaser, so it left me a bit cold. 6/10 stars.

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