The Way Ahead

Overview

The Immortal Battalion has a bit of a convoluted history. It started life as a training film, The New Lot, which ran 44 minutes. When Winston Churchill approached David Niven about creating a film that would do for the British Army what In Which We Serve had done for the Royal Navy, he contacted Carol Reed and suggested expanding The New Lot. The result, written by Eric Ambler and Peter Ustinov, was the acclaimed The Way Ahead. For its U.S. release, Way Ahead was edited to a shorter length and retitled The ...
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Overview

The Immortal Battalion has a bit of a convoluted history. It started life as a training film, The New Lot, which ran 44 minutes. When Winston Churchill approached David Niven about creating a film that would do for the British Army what In Which We Serve had done for the Royal Navy, he contacted Carol Reed and suggested expanding The New Lot. The result, written by Eric Ambler and Peter Ustinov, was the acclaimed The Way Ahead. For its U.S. release, Way Ahead was edited to a shorter length and retitled The Immortal Battalion. In either of its feature length forms, the film is concerned with the training of a bunch of raw recruits into a capable and efficient fighting regiment. Niven stars as Jim Perry, a lieutenant and former ordinary guy who finds that he must learn to take a tough line in order to make his wildly diverse crew come together and understand the importance both of the war and of their place in it. Although it takes time and constant effort on the part of Perry and his sergeant, the eight men eventually overcome their different backgrounds and feelings, and transform themselves into a unit which performs its tasks with admirable skill and dexterity, preparing them for their battle against the Desert Fox in Africa. Told in a semi-documentary style, Battalion also features the screen debut of Trevor Howard.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/27/2014
  • UPC: 089859901829
  • Original Release: 1944
  • Rating:

  • Source: Vci Mod
  • Presentation: B&W
  • Time: 1:55:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 65,968

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
David Niven Lieutenant Jim Perry
Raymond Huntley Davenport
William Hartnell Sergeant Fletcher
Stanley Holloway Brewer
James Donald Lloyd
Leo Genn Company Commander
John Laurie Luke
Leslie Dwyer Side Beck
Hugh Burden Parsons
Jimmy Hanley Stainer
Peter Ustinov Rispoli
Grace Arnold
Esma Cannon
Eileen Erskine
Alf Goddard Instructor
Mary Jerrold Mrs. Gillingham
Raymond Lovell Garage Proprietor
A.E. Matthews Col. Walmsley
Tessie O'Shea Herself
Lloyd Pearson
John Ruddock
John Salew
Johnnie Schofield
Reginald Tate Commanding Officer
Jack Watling Marjorie's Boy Friend
Penelope Dudley-Ward Mrs. Perry
George Merritt Sgt. Maj.
Trevor Howard Officer
Renée Ashershon Marjorie Gillingham
Technical Credits
Carol Reed Director
William Alwyn Score Composer
Eric Ambler Screenwriter
Guy Green Cinematographer
Muir Mathieson Musical Direction/Supervision
Fergus McDonell Editor
John Sutro Producer
Peter Ustinov Screenwriter
Norman Walker Producer
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