Sunday, July 17, 2016

A Thunder of Drums (1961)

Director: Joseph M. Newman

Writer: James Warner Bellah

Composer: Harry Sukman

Starring: Richard Boone, George Hamilton, Luana Patten, Arthur O'Connell, Charles Bronson, Richard Chamberlain, James Douglas, Tammy Marihugh, Carole Wells, Duane Eddy, Slim Pickens

More info: IMDb

Tagline:  A regiment of forgotten men... a woman no man could forget!

Plot: Captain Maddocks will never be promoted beyond Captain because of a mistake that he made in the past. Lt. McQuade is a green rookie who is now under the command of the tough Captain and he does not seem to be able to do anything right. Lt. McQuade also has trouble with Tracey, but it will be the renegade Indians that will test him and teach him the importance of following orders.

My rating: 6/10

Will I watch it again?  No.

#33 on Project: Badass Charles Bronson

LEVEL OF BADASSICITY (10 being the highest): 6

This great cast is wasted on a mediocre script with some poor dialogue.  There's a good deal of love triangle drama that bogs it down and you don't get any rootin' tootin' shootin' with the good guys versus the bad until the last twenty minutes.  Boone has a few good moments but he's also got a couple of how-was-this-left-in-the-picture spots.  Hamilton is OK at best but he doesn't fare well in parts.  Slim Pickens is great but he's hardly in it.  Richard Chamberlain has a small role and looking way too young.  Legendary guitarist Duane Eddy plays one of the soldiers, too.  The big surprise is Charles Bronson playing the comic relief!!!  He's also the one who we see and hear first after the opening credits.  He's such a badass.  You can tell he's acting, though, because he gets in a fist fight with Hamilton and it's Hamilton that wins.  In real life Bronson would've beat the tan off Hamilton's pretty face and would've pummeled that birth mark to the back of his head, ripped his head clean off exposing the spine and then turned his body neck down and thrust it straight into the dirt where it would stand as a warning to everyone not to fuck with Bronson.  Yup, that's exactly how it'd go down.  The picture has a couple of action sequences in the last act between the soldiers and the Indians.  Lessons learned, Hamilton takes over the fort and doesn't get the girl.  That's one thing that surprised even me.  I didn't see that coming.  And neither did he when, after the cameras stopped rolling, Bronson went to town on Hamilton's skinny-ass body, putting him in his place...which is, you know, upside down in the dirt with only his protruding spinal cord penetrating the dirt.

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