Film: 6554

History | 1970 | Mute | Colour

Synopsis:

An historical reconstruction of 17th century English Civil War battle, but not necessarilly of an actual or specific battle - probably by the 'Sealed Knot' re-enactment society. Filmed at Warwick Castle, England. (Because of the editing, lack of sound and indistinguishability of the uniforms, it is hard to tell which side is which, but it is quite possible that the re-enactment alludes to the seige of Warwick Castle in 1642, when the Royalist Earl of Northampton beseiged the castle and the Parliamentarian Lord Brooke defended it.)

English Civil War armour - a cavalry helmet or 'lobster pot' and cuirass (body armour) - and musket rifle, a quote from writer Robert Louis Stephenson superimposed. Historic reconstruction: nightshot of a sentry holding a halberd (a cross between a spear and an axe) - superimposed title: 'Warwick Castle, Dawn 10th August 1642' - then the sentry moves on. Tower and battlements of Warwick Castle (medieval), a courtyard where a musketeer patrols. Dim picture, suggesting night or dawn, of a castle tower seen through trees. Closer, of another tower or turret. A fire burning, the sentry and musketeer warming themselves, the sentry smoking a clay pipe. Closer of the sentry with his pipe. The musketeer lighting his. The sentry rubbing his eyes. The musketeer smoking. Probably the castle, seen dimly from a distance. A dawn view of a tree top. Dawn view of tree tops. The feet of the pacing sentry. Birds wheeling in the sky. A round tower of the castle, a flag flying from the top of it. A similar tower as the sun breaks throough trees. An officer with an orange sash keeps look out from the battlements (he resembles Charles I but the orange sash suggests he's Parliamentarian). His POV - a woody field. The officer looking out. He paces the wall, passing a muskteer aiming his musket. The officer's POV through the crenellations (battlements) at the countryside. He continues walking till he reaches a sentry and the musketeer seen earlier and stands with them looking out. Close up of the officer's proile. He turns and issues orders to the men. The sentry leaves. The sentry's feet hurry down a flight of stone steps. He hurries down. He cups his hands and hollers or shouts to someone. Three fancily dressed men - possibly cavaliers - bang on their drums. Marching feet. Marching pikemen (pikes are like very long spears). A Royalist flag, then other flags carried by soldiers who are ensigns. Gaudily dressed oficers with feathers or plumes in their helmets and hats, lead a body of soldiers including drummers and musketeers. Horses' hooves. A smartly dressed and armoured cavalry officer rides at the head of other cavalry. A number of drummers, soldiers marching in the distance. Officers lead troops through a wood. Drummers, a bagpipe player, pikemen and ensigns file past trees. Helmeted soldiers carrying short spears or pikes and maces, marching. A flag showing lions and St George's cross. Men trundle cannon. A cannon looms over us as it passes by. Gunners push a larger cannon down a road, other soldiers moving in the same direction. Another cannon looms over us. Drummers beat their drums. A flag is carried. Officers march past, followed by pikemen. Drums are beaten. A mass of pikemen marching and flags flapping, seen through branches. Officers on horseback. In a field, pikemen march in columns. Other pikemen marching. Troops marching near the base of the castle wall, seen from the top of the wall. Pikemen seen through branches again. A bespectacled soldier - probably a sergeant - shouts orders. Troops in a field stand in order. The officer with an orange sash whom we saw earlier, looks out from the castle battlements, soldiers on the wall behind him. A body of blue jacketed pikemen march out of the castle's gate. Troops filing out. An officer on a white hosre surveys marching pikemen. A similarly dressed body of pikemen march in the opposite direction, musketeers accompanying them. The officer on the battlement watches. Troops form up in the field below the castle walls, preparing to fight one another. A flag flies. A soldier stands on a fellow's shoulders to shout to someone. Musketeers stand aiming their muskets, which they cock. Soldiers jeer. The pikemen look serious, listening to a prayer from a minister. Soldiers seen across a field. The sergeant whom we saw earlier shouts - lip reading, he says "Give Fire". A cannon, in front of other soldeirs, is fired, giving off a great cloud of white smoke. The officer on the wall watches. A small cannon on top of the wall is fired back towards the other cannon. Explosions in a field, near soldiers. Another cannon opens fire. Another, from the right and further away, soldiers standing in ranks behind it. And another, from the left and closer, with less men nearby, nearer trees. An explosion in a field. A cannon fires from the right, pikemen and musketeers clustered round it, then we follow the cannon ball's path through the air till it explodes on a slope near the castle, enemy (?) pikemen at the base of the slope. Cannoniers or gunners on the castle battlements look out at the soldiers below and in the distance, some of whom are squaring up for a fight. A cannonier in a field cleans or prepares his cannon while pikemen and a drummer march behind him. The minister we saw earlier encourages forward the musketeers and pikemen near him - he is probably giving them a psalm. Soldiers squaring up for batle, seen from the castle walls, and watched by gunners. The officer with an ornage sash bellows an order. The cannon on the battlements is fired. Another, below it on the slope, fires too. Close up of a cannon muzzle firing. Red-coated soldiers advance through a wood, then a bomb explodes near them. The same troops charge from the woods and down a dirt road, towards the battlements, an explksion going off close by. More explosions as these soldiers exit the trees , some being killed by an explosion. A large cannon firing in their direction. A smaller cannon firing in the same direction. Another view from the battlements of the red-coated charging soldiers as explosions fell more of their number. Pikemen, with oak leaves attached to their helmets as field signs (to distinguish sides in the absence of uniforms), are pulled across a river on a boat. The same, from another angle, the men leaping off as they reach the bank. These pikemen scramble up the bank. Two finely dressed officers, pointing things out to each other. A cannon facing right as troops advance to right. More armoured soldiers, also advancing to the right. Pikemen with levelled pikes pointing at breat height, advance to the right too. Two bodies of pikemen clash. Closer, the pushing and jostling. A hlmeted man and a hattted one, fighting. Pikemen at 'push of pike' are pushed to and fro. The pikemen, densely packed. The tops or points of massed pikes as they advance or retreat. The pikemen carrying them, skirmishes breaking out. In the melee, a soldier with an axe chops down a musketeer. A wounded man is carried away. Pikemen clashing. A line of kneeling soldiers - probably dismounted cavalrymen or cuirassiers - aiming their muskets or carbines, a line of pikemen standing behind them, all facing left. A musketeer facing right, readies his musket. Another, similar, cocks his musket and aims. Musketeers on the castle battlements take aim. Close up of a flintlock musket being cocked. One of the musketeers on the battlement fires. Close up of a musket's flint lock system as it is firied, sparks everywhere. The line of dismounted cavalry seen before, now standing aiming their muskets and facing right, all fire at once. Close up of a musketeer firing. Gunners run away from a large cannon as it backfires on them, killing one. Troops marching beside a river, a plume of water is thrown up in the air by a cannon shot. A mass of pikemen advancing. Troops forming up in the field below the castle's walls. The officer with the orange sash, gazing out, presumably from the walls. Red-coated pikemen charge ot of a castle gate. A musketeer aims and shoots. One of the pikemen seen charging falls in response to the shot. Close up of an officer shouting. More pikemen charging from the gate. Pikemen advance towards the river, an explosion in the water. Cavalry advance. Gunners haul a cannon. Flag bearers and pikemen march from the castle, singing or shouting. A cannon is pulled into position. A cannon points across a field to soldiers. An officer waves his sword and shouts 'charge'. Pikemen clash. The clash, one of several, seen from further away as other soldiers look on. Pikemen run past others fighting. A splendid looking officer shouts the order 'Give Fire'. The line of dismounted cavalry, whom we saw earlier, duly give fire. A cannon is stoked. A swordfight between two men, one knocking the other to ther ground. Close up of three muskets firing in quick succesion. A cannon is lit. Profile of another cannon firing. A cannon seen from behind as it is fired at opposing troops. Its cannon ball explodes in the field near the enemy. A cannon fires from the right. And another, closer. Cannoniers and cannons next to a church or country hoouse as a bomb explodes in front of them. A cannon fires to the left. Another cannon, from behind. The penultimate cannon as the smoke clears. A cannon backfires and explodes. All the gunners of the penultimate cannon are killed by it. Soldiers lie injured on the ground. An officer lies dead. A dead man's bloody face. An injured man writhes on the ground. Cavalry go in for the charge. They race past a square of pikemen. Enemy cavalry charge from the other direction. The two lots of cavalry clash. Closer, as they sword fight. Two of the officers hitting each other. Two cavalrymen fighting at arms length. Closer, the melee as an elderly horseman is wounded. More clashing horsemen. The fight seen from a distance as some infantry become involved. A man with a tartan sash slashes at someone on horseback. A Scottish foot soldier has his throat cut by one of the cavalry troopers. Cavalry galloping near a ruin. Cavalry, then foot soldeirs, charge a body of pikemen and musketeers. Close up of the fight. Axemen and dismounted cavarly fight hand to hand. Close up of the general struggle of men. One man cuts another's throat as they struggle on the ground. A swordsman and halberdier swiing at each other, against the backdrop of clashing pikemen. One soldier drags another by his arm. A cannon fires at soldiers by the church or country house seen earlier, then as the smoke clears, the soldiers charge the gunners and cannon. Charging soldiers overun another cannon. More pikemen clashing. Soldiers fight over a cannon. Closer of them fighting - cheesy looking as they are smiling - quite funny. The line of dismounted cavarly open fire again. A shot rider falls off his horse. A large group of advancing pikemen. A cavalryman or officer waves his sword at the troops behind him. Gunners drag a cannon up a low bank. The cannon as it is dragged.


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