Gold 1974 ***

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For a bestselling novelist, Wilbur Smith’s work rarely ended up on the big screen: Roger Moore did his best to realize his work, starring with Lee Marvin in 1976’s Shout at The Devil, and also in 1974’s Gold, adapted from Smith’s novel Gold Mine. With many of the crew on a break from the Bond franchise, including director Peter Hunt, professional standards are high in this drama about manly man Rod Slater (Moore) who takes over a South African gold mine only to uncover a plot to flood it, raising the value of gold for his competitors. John Gielgud, Bernard Horsfall and Gordon Jackson are amongst the Brits on board, with Susanna York the romantic interest. Gold builds towards an impressively realized climax, as Slater battles to stop an underground lake from destroying the mine. Filmed on South African locations, somewhat controversially for the time, Gold has resurfaced after a long absence of leave on Amazon Instant.

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