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In this adventurous sequel to The Bastard, Philip Kent (Andrew Stevens) risks his life several times a day in the cause of American Independence. Combining drama, action, adventure and romance, The Rebels is set against the back drop of history.
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Anyway, a fun trip down memory lane! Don Johnson is adorably rascally as Judson Fletcher, Andrew Stevens is suitably upright as Philip Kent, and Doug McClure is a lot of fun as the homesy frontiersman Eph Tait. Lots of guest stars, some fake snow, and catastrophic injuries that are depicted by dabbing fake blood on the appropriate limb (this being the 1970s and not HBO and all). The acting is mostly decent, the friendship angle between Philip, Judson and Eph is nicely played, and there's a great sequence where the German general, Von Steuben, teaches the ragtag soldiers how to load a musket and drill properly, all to the tune of "Chester".
The video quality is fine for what it is (an analog film that was made 40 years ago), the sound is good, and as an added bonus there's more William Daniels as John Adams, reprising the character he played so well in "1776" - and wearing one of the costumes from that movie, I think!
All in all, highly recommended. :-)
The one redeeming feature of "The Rebels" however that makes it worth seeing is William Daniels reprising his "1776" role as John Adams (in another touch of irony, Daniels played Cousin Sam Adams in "The Bastard"), and this time showing his depth as an actor by playing Adams closer to historical reality than the famous musical allowed.
Also, just as a side note of interest, William Daniels is in this show, reprising his '1776' role as John Adams. He doesn't sing, though. :)
Loved this when I saw it on TV in 1979.