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Way Ahead [Import]

David Niven , Stanley Holloway , Carol Reed    DVD

Price: CDN$ 16.47 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Way Ahead [Import] + Malta Story [Import]
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Product Description

Carol Reed's lump-in-the-throat, flag-waver still packs a powerful punch and his semi-documentary technique provides a realistic grittiness to the on screen action. A highly talented cast moves this impressive wartime story on, as we observe a motley crew of young recruits, as they learn to become soldiers, through to the end of the film when they must prove themselves against the enemy. Film debut of Trevor Howard. Originally released in the U.S. in a shortened, more serious version titled "The Immortal Battalion".

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WONDERFUL BRITISH FILM July 18 2012
By Paul Scott - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
The Way Ahead is Excellent piece of British Film Making,documentary-like and has shows the evolution of some stalwart civilians being educated in the tactical principles of battle in North Africa. It is filled with important star performances and highlights teamwork and togetherness in the war effort.The Director Sir Carol Reed succinctly captures the spirit of the events.

Strangely this 1.33:1 film has been matted to a 960 anamorphic transfer while maintaining the original aspect ratio 4.3. Hence there are thick black bars on the side edges. The resulting image is in-and-around 720 pixels wide. The dual-layered image comes from an impressive source. Contrast is reasonably strong and detail surprisingly good. There isn't any intrusive damage and only minor speckles deviating from a pristine smooth appearance.In a couple of words Superb Transfer.

Thanks VCI.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Keeping that stiff upper lip - David Niven's stirring WWII propaganda film Sept. 2 2012
By H. Bala - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
How do you become a looked-to leader of men without it fluffing up your ego? In THE WAY AHEAD (released in the United States as THE IMMORTAL BATTALION) David Niven embodies that very quality, playing an unassuming, quietly self-assured Army lieutenant who toughens up his batch of whiny conscripted malcontents and eventually converts them into efficient military fighting men. As a nod to verisimilitude, David Niven at the time was, in real life, a wartime Rifle Brigade Major when he was approached about a film project promoting the British Army. Accordingly, Carol Reed's 44-minute-long, 1943 training film THE NEW LOT was expanded into this involving 1944 war drama. And since Carol Reed also helms this one, it was bound to not suck. And if you've only ever seen the severely edited U.S.-released THE IMMORTAL BATTALION, you should get your mitts on this one. THE WAY AHEAD is half an hour longer and so fleshes out the narrative more.

I remember reading a brief WWII anecdote about David Niven who, to alleviate his men's nervousness as he was about to lead them into battle, told them: "Look, you chaps only have to do this once. But I'll have to do it all over again in Hollywood with Errol Flynn!" I hope this really happened, because if it did, David Niven is the friggin' MAN!

If you've seen one, you've seen loads. THE WAY AHEAD doesn't really offer anything new, except that the cast is across-the-board solid, playing identifiable characters, even those seven or eight grumbling recruits who simply can't fathom why their tough drill sergeant is being allowed to bully them so. These grousers come from diverse walks of life, from middle- to working-class, all quite unprepared for the rigors of basic training. Niven's Lt. Jim Perry initially stays in the background, and it's not until this bunch deliberately sabotages a training exercise does he rip into them as only a refined British gentleman can. After that, you can sense Perry's determination to take a more hands-on approach and whip this sorry lot into shape.

We watch these discontented recruits bond together and evolve into skilled and willing infantrymen, and a thought may sneak in that this is what the Army wanted you to see: that this isn't a bunch of shirkers and complainers, but, rather, just ordinary men caught up in frightening times, buffeted and feeling the pinch and striving to cope. They do come around, and I think that was the message the British Army wanted to send out. We note the eventual show of camaraderie among the grunts and Lt. Perry and Sgt. Fletcher, and there's no surprise there. But Carol Reed's craftsmanship overcomes the triteness of the plot, and so even though these are all familiar beats, you're still become engrossed in gritty, high-spirited drama. It's a sleight-of-hand knack which the best directors can do in their sleep.

Boot camp in the rear view, training completed, backbones all shored up, Lt. Perry's now well-disciplined regiment finally gets a crack at the war. Anticipating a role in the invasion of North Africa and tangling with Field Marshal Rommel and "the greatest professional army in the world," our British Tommies are thwarted when their transport ship almost capsizes. Still, they do eventually get in on the action as they make a stand guarding a tiny town overseas (Tunisia?), and abetted by a young Peter Ustinov playing a French-talking Arab cafe owner. Interestingly, THE WAY AHEAD is one of those rare war pictures that features a low body count. Also, instead of the typical "The End," it closes out with "The Beginning," as we watch the British infantry walk away from the camera, ready to take the fight to the enemy. I wonder what sort of pep talk David Niven told them before they sallied forth?
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Movie Aug. 10 2012
By John J. Ryan - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Above average example of wartime "morale" movies that the British somehow did so well.If you are a movie buff you will recognize the excellent support players by sight if not by name. I know I am generalizing but I have often wondered why British productions (even on t.v.)have such a stock of wonderful male/female actors as compared to U.S. productions which seem stocked with average acting ability/pretty faces.Is it the number of productions produced every year? Anyway,this is a wonderful flick!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good all-around story Feb. 12 2013
By skwsand - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I had "Immortal Battalion" from a previous purchase on multi- movie set. This adds a few scenes not in IB
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the way ahead Oct. 21 2012
By John F. Negri - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
an excellent movie. this is a wwii movie about a group of draftees which go through trials and tribulations to become good soldiers.

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