The War Lord (1965) - Drama, History

Hohum Score

13

Watchable

In 11th century Normandy, a Norman duke sends one of his knights to build a defensive fortress in order to guard the borders against Frisian raiders.

IMDB: 6.8
Director: Franklin J. Schaffner
Stars: Charlton Heston, Richard Boone
Length: 123 Minutes
PG Rating: N/A
Reviews: 5 out of 47 found boring (10.63%)

One-line Reviews (33)

He's very intense here, his envy of his brother and coveting his station a palpable energy.

Take it in, but fast forward in the middle if you get bored.

Now it IS possible to make an exciting film about Medieval life--"The Vikings" (1958) is a great example as are pageantry films like "Ivanhoe" and "Robin Hood".

I also was disappointed as I thought the film was disjointed.

This priest was VERY confusing--very pagan AND very Christian at the same time!

Presumably, a kind of Romeo and Juliet scenario is supposed to be alluded too, but this dull effort falls far short of any Shakespearean aspirations it might have.

THE WAR LORD isn't in the same league, and for a long time in the middle of the film it's rather stodgy, bogged down by endless romance scenes between an autopilot Heston and an insipid Rosemary Forsyth.

A very enjoyable film .

It's a rousing adventure film about a Norman Knight, who falls in love with an engaged village Girl and claims his right to sleep with her before the marriage.

Amongst these, however, a repetitive confrontation among brothers, stereotyped characters and moral tenets (more pertaining to 1965 than to Middle Ages, I fear) which fatally influence the ending.

Ponderous until the battle scenes .

Stodgy film lifted by some great siege warfare .

Really gives you the feel of cold gloomy stone castles, dreary swamps of northwest Europe, and the unbearable social caste system.

but thank heaven we have them all assembled here in this exciting yarn about the middle ages.

Upon arriving, he realizes the Frisian King (Henry Wilcoxon) and his Vikings are raiding his holding and exciting action follows, as he has unknowingly captured the Frisian king's son.

The aces in the hole of this stunning movie are the evocative musical score by Jerome Moross and colorful cinematography by Russell Metty with wonderful images of all kind of skies and turquoise interiors.

There are no explosions, colors are muted and haircuts pretty bad (just look at Charlton Heston in this film)--and it takes real creativity to make an exciting film about this era--especially when "The War Lord" lacks the wild story elements of these other films.

), the moronic wigs the baddies wear, and the veneer of cheese whiz, it's good story-telling and entertaining to boot.

Rating : Better than average, well worth watching.

Exciting fare for those who care to relive the middle ages.

So, I had relatively low expectations for "The War Lord"--as making an engaging story would be an uphill battle.

He develops a case of intense lust for Forsythe after glimpsing her in the river and exchanging a dozen lines with her.

***SPOILERS***The heart-broken Marc who turned traitor when his love Bronwyn willingly dumped him for Chrysogan still seeks revenge against him only to have himself get run through, by a large tree branch, by Bores who by then was about the only on left, besides Chrysogan,of those defending the castle from the invading Frisians.

Even so, The War Lord is one of the most medieval films I've ever seen, and is definitely worth watching if you can find it.

Their emotional interplay is as intense as it is fated.

Otherwise, an enjoyable film, and I would recommend it.

Wardrobe has made the villagers drab, except for the girl Heston falls for, in the biggest mistake of his life, who has a loosely draped gown with a cunning décolletage and a slit up the side like Shanghai Lil's.

The kind of role he plays here - that of a soldier awarded lands and the people who dwell on them in payment for his military services to a duke - is ideally suited to his dour and colourless persona, but the film's verbosity gives away its stage origins and makes for very dull fare.

Chuck, Heston that is, is at his best as the fearless Warlord Chaysogan together with his top kick or #1 man Richard Boone as Bors as they turn the tide against the invading Frisians in the films exciting final battle scenes.

Other good ingredients: a rousing and romantic musical score, and some well-done outdoor photography of Chrysagon's tower fortress and the battle scenes.

And, seeing the boiling oil tossed on the Frisians near the end was pretty exciting...

The film carries on to a totally unexpected tragedy, followed by an unsatisfactory ending cribbed from Hemmingways For Whom The Bell Tolls.. Well worth watching if you like action films.

The knife fight between him and Heston ends in a cliché.