1942, a forgotten and decrepit military base in Montana.
In the middle of a brawl among a group of unruly, ragged and undisciplined American soldiers—guilty of “military and moral delinquencies”, as their commanding officer puts it—the sound of bagpipes comes floating down the road. A contingent of Canadians, the best of the best-trained army in the world, comes marching along in precise formation. Not a man is out of step, not a hair is out of place. They are the picture of discipline. And they are to be, along with the Americans, amalgamated into a fighting force that will be dropped into the middle of Norway.
I’m a sucker for Westerns, but a long diet of classic Bollywood, with its abundant songs and happy endings, has rather spoilt things for me: I find I don’t like the dark and moody Westerns that go deep into the psychology of a silent and brooding hero. Rio Bravo, therefore, was right up my street: lots of action, a bit of humour, and even two great songs. Dean Martin. What more could a girl want?