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Customer Review

on January 6, 2001
This is THE "mercenary movie," from the book by David Carney (which sold like coldcakes). Inspired by true events, and featuring locations in southern Africa, the film featured technical advice by members of the original "Wild Geese" who fought against Congolese rebels in the early 1960s.
The story is rooted in the rumor that Moise Tshombe had not been killed following the uprising, but instead kept alive as a political pawn.
In Carney's story, African leader Julius Limbani was reported to have been killed by the Idi-Amin-style strongman who ousted him, but instead was "put on ice" in another country. This other country then realizes the leverage they hold, as the specter of a "resurrected" Limbani would destroy the usurper's government. The strongman then decides to bring Limbani back for execution.
Meanwhile, a British banker has hired mercenary Colonel Alan Faulkner (Sir Richard Burton) to rescue Limbani, to get mining concessions in his country. Faulkner, an "out of work drunk," then gathers his former officers, Sean Finn (Roger Moore) and Rafer Janders (Richard Harris) and some of his old unit together to do the job. Finn then recruits a former South African ranger (Hardy Kruger) who is vital to the plan's success, but not pleased with the mission -- he is only there so that he can get back home from England ("You don't realize this is an island, until you try to get off of it!").
The problem with being paid to risk your life, though, is that the people paying you only see you as an expendable asset . . .
This film was so much fun to make that most of the same crew got together again to do "The Sea Wolves," about the last battle of the Calcutta Light Horse in WWII, which is also on the Recommended List.
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