The Dark Avenger
|The Dark Avenger|
1955 British Theatrical Poster
|Directed by||Henry Levin|
|Produced by||Walter Mirisch|
|Written by||Daniel B. Ullman
Phil Park (uncredited)
|Music by||Cedric Thrope Davie|
|Editing by||Edward B. Jarvis|
|Distributed by||Allied Artists Pictures
20th Century Fox
Warner Bros. Pictures
|Release dates||Mid-April 1955(England)|
|Running time||General release:
The Dark Avenger is a 1955 English Adventure film directed by Henry Levin. The screenplay was written by Daniel B. Ullman (and an uncredited Phil Park). The film stars Errol Flynn, Joanne Dru and Peter Finch. The music score is by Cedric Thorpe Davie. It is also known as The Warriors in the United States, and had a working title of The Black Prince in the United Kingdom.
The Dark Avenger follows the adventures of Edward the Black Prince, son of King Edward III and heir to the throne of England, as he tries to liberate the people of Aquitaine from the cruel grasp of France.
The film was the last historical action film Errol Flynn would ever make. One particularly interesting and unusual aspect of the film is that Flynn's character never has a closeup, and in all of the action scenes his face is concealed by a medieval war helmet visor.
Edward, Prince of Wales, son and heir to his father King Edward III of England, leads an English army to the French province of Aquitaine to protect the inhabitant from the ravages of the French. After defeating the French in battle, the defeated French plot to kill the prince. Failing in this, they kidnap his lady, the lovely Lady Joan Holland. Of course Prince Edward has to ride to the rescue, adopting numerous guises to save his paramour, which ultimately end in him leading his men into one final climactic battle against the French.
- Errol Flynn as Edward, the Black Prince
- Joanne Dru as Lady Joan Holland
- Peter Finch as Comte de Ville
- Yvonne Furneaux as Marie
- Patrick Holt as Sir Ellys
- Michael Hordern as Edward III
- Moultrie Kelsall as Sir Bruce
- Robert Urquhart as Sir Philip
- Noel Willman as Du Guesclin
- Frances Rowe as Genevieve
- Alastair Hunter] as Libeau
- Rupert Davies as Sir John
- Ewen Solon as D'Estell
- Vincent Winter as John Holland
- Richard O'Sullivan as Thomas Holland
- Jack Lambert as Dubois
- John Welsh as Gurd
- Harold Kasket as Arnaud
- Leslie Linder as François Le Clerc
- Robert Brown as First French Knight
- John Phillips as Second French Knight
The film was shot in England starting August 1954. Flynn made the film shortly after his proposed movie of William Tell had fallen over and was in bad need of funds. The old castle set for Ivanhoe (1952) was used.
According to The New York Times, the film is "corn...every step of the way. But this Allied Artists presentation ... holds three assets that render it at least palatable. Number one, photographed (by Guy Green) in color at England's Elstree Studios, with a spanking array of period castles and costumes cluttering the lovely countryside, it all looks quite fetching. Number two, it moves. Finally—perhaps as a consequence—the familiar, history-laden plot unwinds with a surprising lack of pretentiousness for this type of film. Peeled of its vintage trappings, however, the picture would play—indeed, does—like the mouldiest kind of Western, the one about the noble cowboy who routs the greedy land barons (French), saving the land for the settlers and papa (His Majesty, King Edward I)."
- "Screen: The Warriors; Erroll Flynn Tireless in Palace Drama". The New York Times. September 10, 1955. Retrieved 2012-06-20.
- "Notes". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 2012-06-20.
- Stellar Trio for 'Prince'; Green Signs Selected Johnny New Pact, Schallert, Edwin. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 23 July 1954: B7.
- Tony Thomas, Rudy Behlmer & Clifford McCarty, The Films of Errol Flynn, Citadel Press, 1969 p 204