Michael "Beau" Geste leaves England in disgrace and joins the infamous French Foreign Legion. He is reunited with his two brothers in North Africa, where they face greater danger from their... See full summary »
A timid British Army officer has quit and burns his last day summons to a war in Egypt. Calling him a coward, his girl friend and 3 officer friends give him a white feather. In redemption, he shadows his friends in war to save their lives.
C. Aubrey Smith
Mary Rutledge arrives from the east, finds her fiance dead, and goes to work at the roulette wheel of Louis Charnalis' Bella Donna, a rowdy gambling house in San Francisco in the 1850s. She... See full summary »
Edward G. Robinson,
Beau, John, and Digby Geste are three inseparable, adventurous brothers who haven been adopted into the wealthy household of Lady Brandon. When money in the uppercrust household grows tight, Lady Brandon is forced to sell her most treasured jewel the mighty "Blue Water" sapphire. The household gets it out for one final look, the lights go out and it vanishes stolen by one of the brothers, no doubt. That night, Beau, Digby, and John each "confess" and slip out, John leaving behind Isabel, whom he loves. They all join the Foreign Legion, and Beau and Digby are split from John and put under the command of the ruthless and sadistic Sergeant Markoff. Things begin to get hairy as the rest of the Legionaires plot a mutiny against Markoff, in the midst of an attack by Arab hordes.Written by
Sam Hayes <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Gary Cooper was 38, although his character was supposed to be in his early twenties. See more »
It is night when Markoff and the others go into the barracks to stop the mutiny, but it is midmorning when they come out. See more »
[Schwartz is shouting at the legionnaires to mutiny against Markoff]
Michael 'Beau' Geste:
Wait a minute. I don't know much about mutinies, but I do know it isn't good form to plan them at the top of your voice.
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Opening credits prologue: "The love of a man for a woman wanes and waxes like the moon . . . but the love of brother for brother is steadfast as the stars, and endures like the word of the prophet."
The addition of sound, and a sharper focus, only serves to make this version of "Beau Geste" (1926) seem older, and less European; specifically, the lack of consideration for the change in technology, from silent to sound, does not make this an improvement over the original silent film. And, the ages in the cast do not add up. Still, it's a good adventure story, and a fine Hollywood production. Despite showing the obvious "generation gap", Gary Cooper (Beau), Ray Milland (John), Robert Preston (Digby) are valiant as the brothers Geste, who join the French Foreign Legion for honor and gratitude.
Brian Donlevy's sadistic "Sergeant Markov" (nee "Lejaune"), who promises his men, "I make soldiers out of scum like you and I don't do it gently!" was duly nominated for a "Best Supporting Actor" Oscar. A future nominated J. Carrol Naish (as Rasinoff) is also quite nasty. Donald O'Connor (young Beau) and the opening segments help get the film off to a great start. You'll have to decide whether or not the film proves the Arabian proverb: "The love of a man for a woman waxes and wanes like the moon, but the love of brother for brother is steadfast as the stars and endures like the word of the prophet."
******* Beau Geste (8/2/39) William A. Wellman ~ Gary Cooper, Ray Milland, Brian Donlevy, Robert Preston
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