Custer of the West

1967

Biography / Drama / History / War / Western

2
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 25%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 32%
IMDb Rating 5.8 10 1157

Synopsis


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720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
1.2 GB
1280*544
English
NR
23.976 fps
2hr 20 min
P/S 41 / 87
2.19 GB
1920*816
English
NR
23.976 fps
2hr 20 min
P/S 34 / 107

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Theo Robertson 6 / 10

Pure Invention

I`ve got to disagree with some of the comments on this page about Robert Shaw`s accent . It may not sound American but in no way does it sound English . It sounds to my ears as a sort of bastardised Irish and this may well be accurate for the period . Consider the accents for GANGS OF NEW YORK where Martin Scorsese came to the correct conclusion that Americans didn`t speak with the same accent in the mid 19th Century as they do now and so invented a slightly different accent for the American born characters . Perhaps it`s the American actors in CUSTER OF THE WEST who have got their characters accents wrong ?

!!!!! SPOILERS !!!!!

But I do agree that much of this film is totally inaccurate when it comes to the historical parts of this alleged biopic . I admit to knowing very little about the wild west but much of what is seen here doesn`t ring true . Custer whips his men into shape by running them around the fort . It`s possible this may have happened but to have Custer as the last man standing strains all credibility especially when a trooper doing something physically light like beating a drum collapses . Are we to believe a man running up flights of stairs all day is less likely to become exausted than a man beating a drum ? Did injun war parties really wipe out whole towns as seen here during the Indian wars ? I`ve no idea but I do know enough about American history to comment that the Battle of Little Bighorn didn`t happen like it was portrayed here . No matter how often Hollywood tries to rewrite history it can`t change the fact that George Armstrong Custer died early in the battle , he did not as shown here remain the last man standing . Even more insulting is the suggestion that the Indian chief gave Custer the chance to walk away from the battle , a choice Custer refused in order to die a heroic death . This is more fabrication on the part of Hollywood producers.

There are some good points about the film . Despite being somewhat intrusive Bernardo Segall`s score is very good and I remember from my childhood the haunting scene of the calvary Sgt escaping down the logging trough only to be killed by Indians waiting to ambush a train . But CUSTER OF THE WEST isn`t really a film that will appeal to people who hate westerns while western fans will become very irritated by the artistic license employed

Reviewed by rsouza 3 / 10

More epic than history.

As an amateur historian and Indian Wars living history re-enactor, I have a number of problems with this film. Aside from the acting (I normally like Robert Shaw), the technical and historical failings really detract from its story. Spoilers? Can there be anyone on earth who does not know the story of the Little Bighorn? It has been pointed out that the topography of the area is completely wrong, the battle in the film is far different from what really occurred and the troops are using the wrong weapons. But even on TV, you can see the square pillows under the soldier's clothing as the arrows strike them! Really a grade B effort, and that's too bad.

Reviewed by Doylenf 5 / 10

Custer deserves a more colorful script...and a better Custer...

Handsome but dull western (courtesy of Spanish landscapes) to depict Custer on a mission to steal land from the Indians. A blond ROBERT SHAW looks convincing enough on horseback but something about his accent seems wrong and charisma is lacking. The Indians look more European than like American Indians and too many of the action scenes are slow paced and repetitive as Custer and his men go on various missions.

MARY URE as his wife, Libby, has little to do but register impatience with being kept in the background between battles with long waits before she shares the screen with real-life hubby, ROBERT SHAW. A more mature looking JEFFREY HUNTER (sporting gray hairs) is Will Benteen, one of Custer's more loyal officers.

The mountainous plains in Spain are no substitute for our standard glimpses of John Ford territory with not a single shot looking as though photographed in the American West. But it's the dull storyline that defeats the movie from ever becoming anything more than a series of handsomely photographed outdoor sequences. A surprise Indian attack by the Cheyennes on an Indepdence Day Celebration is one of the more colorful moments and triggers Custer's determination to fight the redskins, no matter that they greatly outnumber his men.

Nothing in Shaw's performance suggests the color and vigor of Custer's bigger than life personality nor does the screenplay do any real justice to the man or the myth. As storytelling goes, the first half of the film manages to be just plain dull and the film only picks up speed as it nears the climactic fight at Little Big Horn.

Battle skirmishes with Indians are, on the whole, well staged and full of furious gunsmoke and flying arrows--but the big set piece is saved, of course, for the finale which comes too late to save the first half of the film from the doldrums. One is left with the impression that some inventive fictionalizing would have helped (as it did with THEY DIED WITH THEIR BOOTS ON).

Summing up: A very miscast Shaw plays Custer as a snarling villain who barks orders and the story has a plodding script. Could have been much more impressive if filmed in the U.S. on more realistic locales with more accurate casting. A cameo by ROBERT RYAN is no help at all.

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