Friday Night Movie Number 40 – The Four Feathers

If it’s a classic British actioner with lots of soldiers fighting Bearded Savages in the Sudan then this is for you. The plot revolves around one Harry Faversham the son of a respected military man who turns his back on the Army, not for reasons of cowardice but in order to live a different life. He resolves to leave the forces but the day before he does so, telegrams arrive at a party he and his brother officers are attending. These telegrams are instructions from the War Office to mobilise Faversham and his fellow officers in order to fight the Islamic savages in the Sudan. Desperate to have a life outside the Army, Faversham burns the telegrams but is later discovered to have done so.

Because of this action, which is seen as a form of cowardice by Faversham’s brother officers and his fiance, he is presented with four white feathers as a badge of his cowardice in the face of the enemy.

Shamed by the accusation of desertion of duty, Faversham departs from his family, home and country and attempts to redeem himself and personally hand back every white feather he has been handed.

There are several versions of this tale, originally from a story by that have been committed to film and some may prefer the 1939 version, but this made for TV version is as a workmanlike telling of a classic yarn. Some reviewers of this film say that Beau Bridges playing Faversham was miscast but in my opinion he performed the role well. There is also wealth of British acting talent on display in this film with Harry Andrews playing Faversham’s father, Jane Seymour as his fiance and Robert Powell and Simon Ward as Faversham’s fellow officers.

I enjoyed this film and I hope you enjoy it too.