The Charge of the Light Brigade (1968)

The Charge of the Light Brigade (1968) UK, dir. Tony Richardson. Color/35mm/Panavision.

I recently saw this film because it features the two stars of my favorite film Blow-Up, David Hemmings and Vanessa Redgrave.  Furthermore, it has animated sequences by the incredible Richard Williams, who I’m a big fan of.  I was not disappointed.  It’s a solid war film and satire with some great animation and acting.    I’m mostly going to discuss these aspects rather than going for my usual full review.

The visuals are great.  This is a nicely-shot film, making full epic use of the widescreen frame in many shots.  Secondly, the animated visuals are fantastic.  They make up the opening credits as well as several transitional scenes, all done entirely in the style of 1800s political cartoons and engravings.  It’s really something special.  Here’s some images to give you an idea of what I’m talking about.

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View all the images in an album here: http://img205.imageshack.us/gal.php?g=brig6.jpg
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See what I mean? Pretty cool, eh?

As for the close-ups in that image set, those are just there to show you how different Redgrave and Hemmings look from their roles in other films. That just goes to show the power of good costuming and make-up, I suppose.
It’s not that great a film to be honest, but the animation segments and visuals do make it worth watching at least once. The film is rather long and jumps around – it can’t really decide on its tone. Yes, I don’t have much to say here. Nothing constructive, anyway. I just wanted to share some amazing images from this film, mostly.

trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZFIkxAQCIM0 (it’s a pretty lame trailer, and it’s way too long. It barely shows any of the animated sequences!)
To make up for the trailer’s lack of awesome animation, here’s the opening credits of the film:

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One Response to “The Charge of the Light Brigade (1968)”

  1. On re-watching those AMAZING animated opening titles, I realized just how significant they are. They not only give historical background and a sense of Britain’s overblown greatness in the Victorian age, but the scenes of dense smokestacks, dismal mines, and crowded factories set in counterpoint to joyous glorious choral music create ironic contrast and show that Britain’s greatness comes at a price….. bravo, Richard Williams, these are just brilliant.

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