Boer War movies

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Posted by Tom on June 08, 1999 at 10:16:37:

In Reply to: Re: Zulu or Zulu Dawn? posted by Champ on June 06, 1999 at 20:16:02:

: Since locating a copy a while back at Suncoast (for a friend of mine) I've had no need to see if they currently have a copy.
: Could be that one was on the shelf a spell :-)

: Like Rich, I too recall seeing it ("Zulu Dawn") on PBS before,
: and last night I remembered seeing it on a local NW station once about 3 yrs ago. Maybe its because I'm 20 minutes from the Canadian border? A thought anyways...

: Do you know of any good Boer War films (other than "Breaker Morant") I've missed?

: Wado ---
: "Champ"


Thanks for the info. I really loved this film as kid- when it was on HBO back in the early '80's. And then fifteen years went by without a sighting until I found that Canadian retailer. Anyway its not as good as I remembered it. Things like character development and a smooth narrative didn't mean so much me then. As long as the movie had some cool battle scenes then it was considered pretty darn good. Now I watch it and I see the potential for a decent epic but overall I am none too impressed with the movie as a film. I still love the battle scenes; but I would not recommend this movie to people who loved Last of the Mohicans.

As for the Boer War? The only movies I can think of that even mention the Boer War, other than the terrific "Breaker Morant," are "Young Winston" and "The Little Princess." I guess an ugly guerilla war in which the Brits were humilated time and time again is not as fertile a ground for British Imperialism films as are their wars in India, the Sudan, and South Africa. "Breaker Morant" is an Austrialian film, which like the other famous Aussie war movie, "Gallipoli," adheres to the belief that Austrialia's interests were not served well by their service in the Empire's wars.

As for my two recomendations:

"Young Winston" tells the story of the early years of Winston Churchill from his rather sad childhood to his first years in parliament. It does depict his military service in pretty good detail with action being shown in the Northwest Frontier in India, the Sudan, and his famous exploits in the Boer War. The movie stars Anne Bancroft, Robert Shaw, and Simon Ward (Zulu Dawn) as Winston Churchill.

"The Little Princess"- This grade A Shirley Temple vehicle only refers to the events of the Boer War. Shirley's character's father is an officer in the British Army who become missing in action in the war. Strangly when this film was remade in the mid '90's they moved the time period in which the film is set to World War I.

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