Dark Of The Sun

( 1 )

Overview

Curry Rod Taylor is a veteran soldier-of-fortune hired by the president of the Congo for a three day mission. He and native Congoan Ruffo Jim Brown are to oversee the safe passage of a train through hostile enemy territory and bring back some uncut diamonds and a human cargo of fugitives loyal to the Congo cause. The two employ the drunken Doctor Wreid Kenneth More and a suspicious ex-Nazi named Henlein Peter Carsten. The quartet, along with 40 of the Congo's best soldiers, try to maneuver the train against the ...
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Overview

Curry Rod Taylor is a veteran soldier-of-fortune hired by the president of the Congo for a three day mission. He and native Congoan Ruffo Jim Brown are to oversee the safe passage of a train through hostile enemy territory and bring back some uncut diamonds and a human cargo of fugitives loyal to the Congo cause. The two employ the drunken Doctor Wreid Kenneth More and a suspicious ex-Nazi named Henlein Peter Carsten. The quartet, along with 40 of the Congo's best soldiers, try to maneuver the train against the rebel forces and save the beautiful missionary Claire Yvette Mimieux at no extra charge. The action takes place in the wake of the political unrest that swept the Congo in the 1950s.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jeremy Wheeler
"If there's killing in the works, I want some killing done -- no free rides!" In 1968, you'd be hard-pressed to find a sentiment as hard as the one relayed with such glorious tough-guy fashion by Rod Taylor in the underrated 1968 war action-adventure Dark of the Sun (aka The Mercenaries). Taking the men-on-a-mission motif and throwing it into a hotbed of bloodthirsty politics and uneasy team-ups, director Jack Cardiff delivers an action spectacle with surprising bite -- especially for its time. The tale of a band of mercenaries battling through a civil-war-torn Congo jungle against bloodthirsty Simba cultists is especially poignant given that it was released just months after the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. Though race plays a large part in the drama, it's just one meaty piece of the puzzle in this gritty no-nonsense thrill-ride. Taylor plays Captain Bruce Curry, a mercenary hired by the President of the African Congo (Calvin Lockhart) to rescue a group of white Europeans and 50 million dollars' worth of diamonds from the middle of a war-torn jungle. By his side is Curry's right-hand man, Sergeant Ruffo (Jim Brown), a Congolese soldier whose participation grows more out of love for the country than greed for the bounty. Also along for the ride are a drunken medical officer, Dr. Wreid (Kenneth More), and an ex-Nazi, Henlein (Peter Carsten), who commands a group of African army officers lent out for the operation. It's no surprise that Hollywood heavyweights love the film -- Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino have both expressed their admiration, the latter going so far as to lift a few musical tracks from the exceptional Jacques Loussier soundtrack for use in Inglourious Basterds. The action is impressive and quite brutal for its time, while the subject matter gets downright lurid in a few scenes (the implied male rape scene to be precise). The theatrical poster boasts a chainsaw-vs.-bare fists fight, which is indeed a highlight, though it's the audacious hotel raid near the end that really gets the blood pumping. As thrilling as it is (thanks to the daring direction and solid character work), the film stays true to the tragic-element trappings of any self-respecting men-on-a-mission flick. And just like the best of the subgenre, when things go bad, you feel it in your gut. Things aren't all so pretty, though -- Yvette Mimieux, who shared a sex scene with Taylor at one point before it was cut prior to the film's release (despite being featured on the poster and stills), doesn't figure into the testosterone aesthetic enough to make an impact. The Henlein character also suffers from a rather obvious case of dubbing during a sizable chunk of the film. Yet, somehow, the picture overcomes its missteps -- which aren't many to begin with. For the most part, this is one freight train of an action picture that isn't afraid to go to the dark places it does. It's well worth checking out for genre enthusiasts and men who like movies about tough men.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/22/2011
  • UPC: 883316342909
  • Original Release: 1968
  • Rating:

  • Source: Warner Archives
  • Presentation: Remastered
  • Time: 1:41:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 23,722

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Rod Taylor Captain Bruce Curry
Yvette Mimieux Claire
Jim Brown Sergeant Ruffo
James Brown Ruffo
Kenneth More Dr. Wreid, Dr. Reid
Peter Carsten Henlein, Hentein
Calvin Lockhart Ubi
Andre Morell Bussier
Guy Deghy Deluge
Bloke Modisane Cpl. Kataki
Olivier Despax Surrier
Alan Gifford Jansen
David Bauer Adams
Murray Kash Cochrane
John Serret Father Dominic
Danny D. Daniels Gen.Moses
Technical Credits
Jack Cardiff Director
Roy Baker Sound/Sound Designer
George Englund Producer
Jacques Loussier Score Composer
Cliff John Richardson Special Effects
Edward Scaife Cinematographer
Elliot Scott Art Director
Adrian Spies Screenwriter
Ernest Walter Editor
Quentin Werty Screenwriter
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Dark of the Sun
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 26, 2002

    The Ultimate Mercenary Thriller

    In the bloodbath which was the Congo in the 1950s and early 1960s two mercenaries take on a mission which is enough to make your hair turn white. Up against a rapidly approaching, drug-crazed and well-armed rebel army the small band has to wait for a time clock to function in a deserted town before they can start the return journey with their incredibly valuable prize. A bloody train ambush, the rape of a town, the heartstopping act of betrayal by a member of the team and for a finale a brutal duel, the result of which forces the leader to face the consequences of his actions. The scenario is authentic - I was there at the same time as the film takes place. I dare you to leave the room while this is showing. If you enjoyed The Wild Geese then you will watch this one time and again and the soundrack music is every bit as haunting. Buy it!

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews