Movie Review: The Sand Pebbles (1966) ****

A Robert Wise period war film, following the story of an independent, and at times rebellious, US Navy mechanical engineer, sailing aboard the USS San Pablo gunboat, doing river patrols in 1920s China. Though making political and social comments plenty, the 3 hours long film, steadily directed by Wise and well acted by its leads including Steve McQueen, Richard Attenborough, Richard Crenna, and Candice Bergen, stays focused on the story, and remains engaging throughout. Some scenes may seem a little heavily-directed by today’s standards, but I would still take this film over many of today’s flicks without a second thought.

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