Watch Now: THE WILD GEESE
When Rhodesian writer Daniel Carney’s unpublished novel The Thin White Line ended up in the hands of producer Euan Lloyd, it fit perfectly with his ambitious plans to make a grand-scale star-studded war adventure film in the vein of Where Eagles Dare. The novel toyed with the rumor about a mysterious 1968 plane landing in Rhodesia allegedly carrying a mercenary force, and when screenwriter Reginald Rose adapted it for film, director Andrew V. McLaglen was hired to bring it to life based on a decisive recommendation from the great John Ford. The cast was loaded with heavy-hitting names such as Richard Burton, Roger Moore, Richard Harris, Hardy Krüger, Stewart Granger, Jack Watson, Frank Finlay and many others.
Shot on an 11-million-dollar budget in South Africa during the summer and autumn of 1977, The Wild Geese turned out to be a highly entertaining epic war film whose 134 minutes of running time fly by in no time. Since McLaglen’s directing experience basically consisted of western movies, he weaved into The Wild Geese the cowboy shoot-out element that makes the action stand out even more. The Expendables before The Expendables, so to say, The Wild Geese is a brisk adrenaline-pumped adventure classic that’s a shame to miss.