HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Morfalous, Les
Dreambuilders
Everything Went Fine
Lux AEterna
Rum Runners
Fairy and the Devil, The
Mad God
Outside the Law
I Remember Mama
Superman Unbound
Lawrence of Belgravia
House Across the Lake, The
Wonder Park
Hornsby e Rodriguez
Operation Mincemeat
5 Kung Fu Daredevil Heroes
Scoob!
Earwig
Offseason
Peau Douce, La
Double Indemnity
Na Cha and the Seven Devils
Deep Murder
Superman vs. the Elite
Adam Project, The
Osamu Tezuka's Last Mystery of the 20th Century
Horse, La
Buffaloed
Train Robbers, The
Let Sleeping Cops Lie
Abominable
Funeral, The
Burning Sea, The
Godzilla Singular Point
Ace of Aces
Innocents, The
Beast and the Magic Sword, The
Last Hard Men, The
Found Footage Phenomenon, The
Night Trap
   
 
Newest Articles
3 From Arrow Player: Sweet Sugar, Girls Nite Out and Manhattan Baby
Little Cat Feat: Stephen King's Cat's Eye on 4K UHD
La Violence: Dobermann at 25
Serious Comedy: The Wrong Arm of the Law on Blu-ray
DC Showcase: Constantine - The House of Mystery and More on Blu-ray
Monster Fun: Three Monster Tales of Sci-Fi Terror on Blu-ray
State of the 70s: Play for Today Volume 3 on Blu-ray
The Movie Damned: Cursed Films II on Shudder
The Dead of Night: In Cold Blood on Blu-ray
Suave and Sophisticated: The Persuaders! Take 50 on Blu-ray
Your Rules are Really Beginning to Annoy Me: Escape from L.A. on 4K UHD
A Woman's Viewfinder: The Camera is Ours on DVD
Chaplin's Silent Pursuit: Modern Times on Blu-ray
The Ecstasy of Cosmic Boredom: Dark Star on Arrow
A Frosty Reception: South and The Great White Silence on Blu-ray
You'll Never Guess Which is Sammo: Skinny Tiger and Fatty Dragon on Blu-ray
Two Christopher Miles Shorts: The Six-Sided Triangle/Rhythm 'n' Greens on Blu-ray
Not So Permissive: The Lovers! on Blu-ray
Uncomfortable Truths: Three Shorts by Andrea Arnold on MUBI
The Call of Nostalgia: Ghostbusters Afterlife on Blu-ray
Moon Night - Space 1999: Super Space Theater on Blu-ray
Super Sammo: Warriors Two and The Prodigal Son on Blu-ray
Sex vs Violence: In the Realm of the Senses on Blu-ray
What's So Funny About Brit Horror? Vampira and Bloodbath at the House of Death on Arrow
Keeping the Beatles Alive: Get Back
   
 
  Bedford Incident, The Battle Stations
Year: 1965
Director: James B. Harris
Stars: Richard Widmark, Sidney Poitier, James MacArthur, Martin Balsam, Wally Cox, Eric Portman, Michael Kane, Colin Maitland, Shane Rimmer, Donald Sutherland, Ed Bishop, Gary Cockrell, Phil Brown, Burnell Tucker
Genre: ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: The U.S.S. Bedford is an American destroyer patrolling the North Atlantic between Greenland and Iceland, and journalist Ben Munceford (Sidney Poitier) has just arrived by helicopter onto the deck to do a story about the goings-on there. He is accompanied by the new medical officer, Lieutenant Commander Potter (Martin Balsam), who wants to get to work straight away, though Munceford finds himself confined to quarters and flung around the cabin as the Captain, Finlander (Richard Widmark), manoeuvres his craft drastically. This Captain is something of a tyrant, as the new arrivals will discover...

The director of this, James B. Harris, usually distinguished himself in crime thrillers of an offbeat variety, adapting novels, though it was his career as a producer that he perhaps would be most famous for as it was he that assisted Stanley Kubrick in bringing that director's works to the screen. This even though they had parted professional ways before Kubrick made his acknowledged classic black comedy Dr. Strangelove, which had many drawing comparisons between both his and Harris's choice of subject matter for their next, nuclear war themed efforts. Of course, Kubrick got most of the attention, but The Bedford Incident was by no means worth neglecting.

It was true Harris's drive for realism here tended to offer proceedings a documentary-style matter of fact quality almost until it was too late, but when the tension arrived you could appreciate all the solid work to bring us to that finale. The political climate of the time was just emerging from the Cuban Missile Crisis which had made everyone a lot more paranoid that World War III was around the corner, and so a lot of the mood and detail of that period was informing the events unfolding fictionally here, where the more hawkish members of the powers that be were taken to task, though the doves were by no means let off lightly for their weak attempts to stand up to them.

Captain Finlander is our hawk, a man who rules his ship with an iron fist, so much so that his men (there's not one woman in the cast) are constantly on edge, something he is warned about by those willing to stand up to him, but not so much that they get him to ease off from the reputation of being a mean "bastard" that he so clearly relishes. One of those warning him is a N.A.T.O. officer from West Germany, an ex-Nazi played with slightly sinister tenor by Eric Portman, though we begin to understand that he is all too aware of his past and is holding back from being too domineering where this post is concerned. Which leaves Munceford as the sole man aboard who can make a difference - or so he believes, yet leans towards subtlety when that is not going to do.

Poitier was notable in The Bedford Incident for finally, after making his movie debut in 1950, appearing in a movie where his race was not only not mentioned, but not essential to the plot, which in its own quiet way was as much a strike for equality as his groundbreaking fifties work had been. But it was the Cold War worries that you would most take away from the unfolding drama as Finlander spots a Soviet submarine straying out of international waters and resolves to pursue it to bring the crew of the craft to book. A cat and mouse suspenser results as the Bedford ensures the sub cannot rise for air, forcing it to surface eventually, or that's the idea, but in reality it's making both sides increasingly anxious and we begin to see where this is inexorably heading. Although that ending smacks of plot contrivance to make a point, it reflected the true stories we have heard since of the globe being brought to the brink of devastation simply because of human error brought about by plain old fear, and as such remains very effective. Music by Gerard Schurmann.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 6636 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Darren Jones
Andrew Pragasam
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Mary Sibley
  Desbris M
  Sheila Reeves
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: