The Wind And The Lion (1975)

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Based on actual events, The Wind And The Lion is the story of a banished Moroccan chieftan who kidnaps an American woman and her two children in an attempt to rid his country of its occupying European forces, resulting in a stand off between he and President Roosevelt.

Written and directed by John Milius who was responsible for scripts as diverse as Apocalypse Now and Conan The Barbarian, this film contains his typically clever dialogue and political subtext as well as a healthy dose of rousing action. There is a satirical commentary on colonialism in general as well as America’s role as self-appointed world policeman; Roosevelt is shown as a man more interested in self-aggrandisement and bluster than justice, all too ready to send in the troops to stamp his will on the rest of the world. His opponent is played by Sean Connery at his most charismatic and Candice Bergen ably fills a role originally intended for Katherine Hepburn as the kidnapped woman who grows to understand the man and realises he is no savage, but an honourable and educated leader of men.

Add a great supporting cast and a rousing score, it’s in turns funny, clever and exciting making this adventure from the old school at it’s most stirring.

8/10

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