55 Days at Peking

Nicholas Ray’s final film was an honorable attempt to combine complex political and social issues while straining to satisfy mainstream audiences’ appetite for traditional epics. That strain got to Ray – he collapsed midway and was replaced by Andrew Marton and Guy Green. The 1963 film was a disappointment at the box office with contemporary screenings few and far between – leaving Jack Hildyard’s spectacular Technirama photography to the dust bin of history.

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