Advance to the Rear


Advance to the Rear
Advance to the Rear

Australian film poster
Directed by George Marshall
Produced by Ted Richmond
Written by William Bowers
Robert Carson
Samuel A. Peeples
William Chamberlain
Jack Schaefer (novel)
Starring Glenn Ford
Stella Stevens
Melvyn Douglas
Music by Randy Sparks
Hugo Montenegro
performed by The New Christy Minstrels
Distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date(s) June 10, 1964
Running time 100 minutes
Country United States
Language English

Advance to the Rear is a light-hearted 1964 western comedy film set in the American Civil War. It stars Glenn Ford, Stella Stevens and Melvyn Douglas and is directed by George Marshall. The film is based on the 1957 novel Company of Cowards by Jack Schaefer, with the film having that title in pre-production and when released in the United Kingdom. However, the novel had none of the comedic elements of the film which retained only the basic idea of a unit formed out of men who had been court-martialed for cowardice and sent out west and some character names.

Contents

Plot summary

Union Colonel Claude Brackenbury has a cozy arrangement with his Confederate counterpart. They fire a few artillery rounds in each other's general direction at precisely the same time each morning, then go back to contentedly waiting for the war to end.

Captain Jared Heath, however, disturbs the status quo one day by going out and capturing some of the enemy. The Confederates feel obliged to retaliate. One thing leads to another and a military fiasco results. As punishment, Brackenbury and Heath are demoted, placed in charge of all the misfits General Willoughby can find and shipped west, where they can (hopefully) do no further damage.

The rebels are suspicious, so they send a beautiful spy, Martha Lou Williams, to find out their "real" mission. After questioning Easy Jenny, a madam Martha Lou is traveling with, Heath sees through Martha Lou's ruse. But he decides that he is going to marry her eventually, so Heath does his best to keep her out of mischief.

When the unit is sent to escort an important gold shipment, the soldiers are captured by Thin Elk, an Indian chief in league with Hugo Zattig of the Confederates. Zattig's men masquerade as Union soldiers (using uniforms taken from prisoners) and hijack the shipment. Thin Elk, meanwhile, recognizing Brackenbury as a fellow West Point graduate, lets his captives go, although without horses or guns.

Heath takes charge. He and the men steal horses from the Indians, retrieve the gold (and Martha Lou) and capture Zattig's gang.

Musical Soundtrack

The score was composed by Randy Sparks with songs sung by The New Christy Minstrels and orchestral music arranged and conducted by Hugo Montenegro. The popular song "Today" (while the blossoms still cling to the vine.), comes from this film. The song was composed (both words and music) by Randy Sparks who was a member of The New Christy Minstrels and it was this vocal group that perhaps had the most commercially successful recording of the song. The song has been recorded by several artists, including the late John Denver, but perhaps the most amusing aspect of this lovely ballad is that so many people assume it to be a centuries old folk song and not part of a Hollywood soundtrack.New Christy Minstrels sing "Today" The film also features a title song under the name of the original title and UK title of the film Company of Cowards and another xong called Riverboat.

Cast

External links


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • The New Christy Minstrels — Origin United States Genres Folk revival Years active 1961–1971; 1976–present Labels Columbia …   Wikipedia

  • The Committee on Credentials — Directed by George Marshall Produced by Bison Motion Pictures Written by Harvey Gates Peter B. Kyne …   Wikipedia

  • The Midnight Flyer — Directed by George Marshall Starring Hoot Gibson Release date(s) 29 June 1918 Running time …   Wikipedia

  • Rear admiral (United States) — The uniformed services of the United States have two grades of rear admirals. Rear admiral (lower half) In the United States Navy, the United States Coast Guard, the United States Public Health Service Commissioned Corps and the National Oceanic… …   Wikipedia

  • The Thirty Years War —     The Thirty Years War     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Thirty Years War     The Thirty Years War (1618 48), though pre eminently a German war, was also of great importance for the history of the whole of Europe, not only because nearly all… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Rear projection effect — Rear projection is an in camera special effects technique in film production for combining foreground performances with pre filmed backgrounds. It was widely used for many years in driving scenes, or to show other forms of distant background… …   Wikipedia

  • The Wizard of Oz (1939 film) — The Wizard of Oz Theatrical release poster Directed by Victor Fleming Uncredited: Norman Taurog Richard Thorpe …   Wikipedia

  • The Benedictine Order —     The Benedictine Order     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Benedictine Order     The Benedictine Order comprises monks living under the Rule of St. Benedict, and commonly known as black monks . The order will be considered in this article under… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker — North American box art Developer(s) Nintendo EAD …   Wikipedia

  • The March (1945) — The March refers to a series of death marches during the final stages of the Second World War in Europe. Over 80,000 Allied PoWs were force marched westward across Poland, Czechoslovakia and Germany in appalling winter conditions, lasting about… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.