Zoltán Korda

The Four Feathers

The Four Feathers

This Technicolor spectacular, directed by Zoltán Korda, is considered the finest of the many adaptations of A. E. W. Mason’s classic 1902 adventure novel about the British empire’s exploits in Africa, and a crowning achievement of Alexander Korda’s legendary production company, London Films. Set at the end of the nineteenth century, The Four Feathers follows the travails of a young officer (John Clements) accused of cowardice after he resigns his post on the eve of a major deployment to Khartoum; he must then fight to redeem himself in the eyes of his fellow officers (including Ralph Richardson) and fiancée (June Duprez). Featuring music by Miklós Rózsa and Oscar-nominated cinematography by Georges Périnal and Osmond Borradaile, The Four Feathers is a thrilling, thunderous epic.

Film Info

  • Zoltán Korda
  • United Kingdom
  • 1939
  • 115 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.37:1
  • English
  • Spine #583

Special Features

  • New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Audio commentary by film historian Charles Drazin
  • New video interview with David Korda, son of director Zoltán Korda
  • A Day at Denham, a short film from 1939 featuring footage of Zoltán Korda on the set of The Four Feathers
  • Theatrical trailer
  • PLUS: A new essay by film critic Michael Sragow

New cover by Gregory Manchess

Purchase Options

Special Features

  • New high-definition digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • Audio commentary by film historian Charles Drazin
  • New video interview with David Korda, son of director Zoltán Korda
  • A Day at Denham, a short film from 1939 featuring footage of Zoltán Korda on the set of The Four Feathers
  • Theatrical trailer
  • PLUS: A new essay by film critic Michael Sragow

New cover by Gregory Manchess

The Four Feathers
Cast
John Clements
Harry Faversham
Ralph Richardson
Captain John Durrance
C. Aubrey Smith
General Burroughs
June Duprez
Ethne Burroughs
Allan Jeayes
General Faversham
Jack Allen
Lieutenant Willoughby
Donald Gray
Peter Burroughs
Frederick Culley
Dr. Sutton
Credits
Director
Zoltán Korda
Producer
Alexander Korda
Based on the novel by
A. E .W. Mason
Screenplay
R. C. Sherriff
Set design
Vincent Korda
Cinematography
Georges Périnal
Cinematography (in the Sudan)
Osmond Borradaile
Additional dialogue
Lajos Biro
Additional dialogue
Arthur Wimperis
Supervising editor
William Hornbeck
Editor
Henry Cornelius
Music
Miklós Rózsa
Musical director
Muir Mathieson

From The Current

The Four Feathers: Breaking the British Square

The Four Feathers: Breaking the British Square

A. E. W. Mason’s sweeping action novel The Four Feathers (1902) had already inspired three films by the time producer Alexander Korda got to it in 1939. It would be filmed three more times afterward. But you really haven’t seen it unless you…

By Michael Sragow

On Film / Essays — Oct 11, 2011

Explore

The Kordas

Director, Producer, Production Designer

During sound cinema’s first full decade, the Hungarian-born Korda brothers—Alexander, Zoltán, and Vincent—built a British empire. The mastermind behind their legendary company, London Films Productions, was producer, director, writer, and eventual mega-mogul Alex; born Sándor Kellner, he became interested in the art of silent cinema as a teenager in his home country, writing criticism and even founding a movie magazine before finding success making his own films all over Europe. In the late twenties, following a short stint in Hollywood, Alex was sent to England to head up Paramount’s British Production Unit; in 1932, he established London Films and brought aboard his younger siblings, Zoltán as a writer/director and Vincent as a production designer. Their first big hit was The Private Life of Henry VIII (1933), which earned Charles Laughton an Oscar and the Kordas international attention. The rest of the thirties held highs (The Rise of Catherine the Great, Elephant Boy) and lows (The Private Life of Don Juan) for the company. But its films—often about historical personalities (Rembrandt) or the exploits of the British Empire abroad (Sanders of the River, The Four Feathers)—remain exemplars of a grand period of British cinema. In the forties, the Kordas only grew in stature—due not only to such immensely popular titles as The Thief of Bagdad and That Hamilton Woman but also to the selection of Alexander, the first film director to be so honored, for knighthood.