A powerful and highly effective tale of military life during peacetime, TUNES OF GLORY follows two very different officers in a Scottish Highland regiment. Director Ronald Neame and the producers cast against type in giving the suave Alec Guinness the role of crude, up-from-the-ranks Lt.
Col. Jock Sinclair, who had bravely led his troops to victory at El Alamein, while John Mills must convince the audience that he is Lt. Col. Basil Barrow, an Oxbridge type who is all spit, polish, and protocol. Sinclair is the interim commander of the 200-year-old unit, a man of war with little
interest in commanding a peacetime unit, which suffers from a lack of discipline in the ranks. Rules are easily bent; dress rehearsals are not taken seriously. Enter military man Barrow, sent to replace Sinclair. Devoted to restoring the faded glory of the regiment, he demands respect from
everyone and ruffles many feathers. However, some who served under Sinclair, appreciating his personal bravery and abilities but hating his boorish ways, flock to Barrow in the hope that he will bring back their former days of glory.
Mills and Guinness are the center of the movie and it's a tossup as to which is better, though Mills won the Best Actor Award at the 1960 Venice Film Festival. The film is all acting and character, nicely accented by the Scottish bagpipe music of Malcolm Arnold.
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