Kick-Back Friday: #51
A fine, early example of a character-driven set piece is John Ford’s The Lost Patrol (1934). In the Middle Eastern theater of WWI, 11 British soldiers are stranded at a Mesopotamian oasis after their commanding officer is shot and their horses are stolen by unseen Arabs. Desert snipers then serially pick off the men during their various displays of bravery, recklessness, and insanity.
Overacting even by his contemporary standards, Boris Karloff nevertheless cuts a striking figure as a religious fanatic before the movie’s climax. The film also features the solidly built Victor McLaglen, who became a staple in Ford’s films.