In STORM OVER THE NILE, Zoltan Korda resurrected his 1939 classic THE FOUR FEATHERS, adapting the lusty story for the new CinemaScope technologies of the 1950s. Unfortunately, the results pale in comparison to the original. Steel, the son of a military family, resigns his commission
shortly before his unit is to leave for the Sudan. Harvey, Lewis, and Carmichael are three fellow officers who despise Steel's action, branding their former comrade a coward. Steel's fiancee, Ure, shares their feelings, and is no longer able to view her intended in the light in which she once saw
him. To show their feelings each gives him a single feather, a symbol of Steel's cowardice. Gradually Steel's conscience begins to plague him, and he decides to return to the Sudan and prove his bravery, disguising himself as a Sudanese. He first comes to the aid of Harvey (who is now wandering
blindly through the desert, suffering from the harsh climate), then sets out to rescue Lewis and Carmichael, who have been captured by the enemy. He frees them, finally proving to his former allies that he has the courage of any stalwart British officer.
Alexander Korda produced the 1939 film and his influence is sorely missed here. Instead, Zoltan Korda took over the producing, sharing his directorial credit with Young. Though the basic story is the same, the acting lacks the power needed to carry it. Steel is unable to sustain his character
throughout the film, starting off well but eventually wearing thin. Lewis and Carmichael are tolerable in support, but Harvey is completely miscast. The nature of the story makes this a natural for the epic screen of CinemaScope, and Korda and Young do make effective use of the process, filling
the film with spectacular battle sequences that brim with colorful excitement and verve. Footage from THE FOUR FEATHERS is also incorporated, but with less success. The clips used had to be blown up to fit the CinemaScope process, which stretched the original images to some obviously distorted
proportions. Considering the possibilities of the story, as well as Korda's proven ability with the material, STORM OVER THE NILE ranks as a disappointment, reducing a heroic and epic story to a simple adventure tale about some very proper British soldiers. This film marked the cinematic debut of
Ure, who has little to do amidst the masculine goings-on.
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- Rating: NR
- Review: In STORM OVER THE NILE, Zoltan Korda resurrected his 1939 classic THE FOUR FEATHERS, adapting the lusty story for the new CinemaScope technologies of the 1950s. Unfortunately, the results pale in comparison to the original. Steel, the son of a military fam… (more)