Tag Archives: The Legend of Ben Hall

The Legend of Ben Hall … The End

9 Oct

Filmmaking is not all glory

Comment excerpt from the film makers: “The Legend of Ben Hall’ was a 100% indie film. We made the film for less than $1million. Most people working on it were first timers, busting their ass to get a break in the film industry. A film like this would normally cost upwards of $5m. Film funding bodies turned us away. Investors told us to get lost. We had to use crowdfunding just to get a leg up. My cast and crew worked for weeks on end on deferred pay – or no pay – battling the cold, the rain and fighting endlessly against a system that just wanted to ignore and squash us, and still continues to do so. We made this film outside of the Hollywood and Australian film industry establishment. Both told us we could never achieve it, yet we did … “

BRAVO!!!

A job very well done.

The Legend of Ben Hall Trivia

Via Internet Movie Database (IMDB)

Director Matthew Holmes spent seven years researching Ben Hall‘s history to ensure the screenplay,
characters and plot were as historically accurate as possible.

Actors Jack Martin (Ben Hall) and Jamie Coffa (John Gilbert) bear striking
physical resemblances to the historical characters they portray.

Ben Hall carries a Tranter revolver. The Tranter revolver was an English ‘cap and ball’ revolver
invented around 1856 by William Tranter.
Tranter revolvers were regarded as reliable and functional, and were extensively used by
Confederate forces during the American Civil War.

‘Brave’ Ben Hall is one of Australia’s most infamous Bushrangers but like many others
such as ‘Mad Dog’ Daniel Morgan and ‘Gentleman Bushranger’ Martin Cash
he is often overlooked as the most popular and well known one is of course Ned Kelly.

It’s very safe to say that the Bushrangers hold exactly the same legendary stature to Australians 
as Billy the Kid and Jesse James do to Americans.

Farewell Ben

Just in time for Thanksgiving

The Guns of Ben Hall – Part 3

9 Oct


Whiskey in the Jar / Krisenka Finley
A nice country interpretation.

These are the last of guns I’m going to profile from The Legend of Ben Hall.
There are others, but this particular firearm called the

Tranter Revolving Rifle

This seems to be a very rare gun. In fact, it was hard to find any images of it.
Because is uses a cylinder it looks like a pistol with long barrel and a stock.
Almost a buntline.

In the film we see John Gilbert (Jamie Coffa) mainly using it and, indeed,
when Gilbert was killed it’s said he had one on him.

It’s also claimed that this weapon – or a version of it – was used in the American Civil War.
though I don’t recall ever seeing depicted in any Civil War films?

Callisher and Terry .53 caliber breech loading Percussion Carbine

53 calibre??! Goodness. Look at the bore on that thing! 

That’s it for the guns. It’s interesting to me.
Hope you enjoyed it

The Guns of Ben Hall – Part 2

24 Sep


Whiskey in the Jar / The Seekers
The legendary Aussie Folk Group does the Honors.

Cap and Ball Revolvers

Ben (Jack Martin) with his .38 calibre Tranter revolver and a .36 calibre Colt Navy.

Don’t know how Ben acquired this. It likely wasn’t borrowed.

Let’s make some Bullets

Ingredients:
Lead; bullet moulds; fire.

Method:
Melt the lead.
Pour it into the mould.
Extract the bullet.

The lads are using Buckshot as a source of lead.
They seem to have two different moulds:
One for Round Shot and another for conventional Bullets.

Casting Roundball

Loading Cap and Ball

Ingredients:
Gunpowder; wadding; bullets; percussion caps.
Wadding is optional.

Method:

If it takes 30 seconds to load one chamber
then 5 chambers would take about 2:50.
An unacceptable amount of time in a gunfight.

Unloading Cap and Ball

Fire the gun.

Next:
The Guns of Ben Hall – Part 3

The Guns of Ben Hall – Part 1

19 Sep


Whisky in the Jar / The Brothers Four
Many versions of the great folk song.
This one is good.

Guns

Westerns have guns. Lotsa guns.
In fact, along with horses, it’s questionable whether it’s really a Western
if it doesn’t have guns in it. Or even worth watching.

Yet I don’t often profile Guns in the Westerns anymore. I stopped.
Not for Political, Social or Spiritual reasons. But because most Westerns use the same guns.
Over and over.
It just became redundant.
Ben Hall, however, has a few new (old) Guns that I’ve never seen before.
Let’s check ’em out.

Firstly, you might be wondering why Ben and his friends are bristling with a rather large number of firearms.
There was a good reason.
This was the Cap and Ball era. Pre-cartridge.
Re-loading was a timely exercise – very impractical during a fight.
Solution: carry lots of guns.

I’ll cover Cap and Ball loading and Bullet Making in my next post.

Below: One of Ben’s revolvers:
1856 Tranter .38 caliber, double trigger, five shot, percussion revolver.
A revolver of this make was found with Ben Hall
at the Billabong where he was killed.

Here’s it’s Cap and Ball Gun Kit.

1856 Tranter .38 caliber, double trigger, five shot, percussion revolver gun kit.
Unlikely Ben toted a kit around – but he definitely had all these tools.

May I now confess that I am no gun expert?
I cannot identify everything in this kit.
Though I was in the Calgary Highlanders Militia
and did a lot of shooting when I was kid, I don’t even own a gun now – of any kind.
And haven’t shot one in a long – except in computer games (Where I’m an expert).
Those of you out there who can ID the items in the kit please step forward.
There’s no reward, but I’ll be grateful.

Proper cleaning and maintenance of your guns was essential.
Otherwise jamming, misfires, fouling and other evils could occur.

Another of Ben’s revolvers:

Most of the gun images are from:
Ben Hall Gallery

https://www.benhallaustralianbushranger.com/p/placesmaps.html

Next:
Ben’s Hall’s Guns – Part 2

The Legend of Ben Hall / Part 3

30 Aug


Stunning Soundtrack by Ronnie Minder. Haunting and powerful.

There’s lots of posters for The Legend of Ben Hall. But I discovered that some are made by fans.
If so, they’re damn good. I’m certain there’s no intention at deception. They just liked the movie.
I’ve created more than a few images myself for other Westerns that are circulating around the net.
I hope people like and enjoy them. Just for fun.

The third of the Preview Trailer of The Legend of Ben Hall:

Reviews

‘6 out of 10’? I don’t agree. But I’m often not in agreement with Critics.
I wouldn’t say that The Legend of Ben Hall is a Western Classic. But it’s a damn good Western and a well made Movie.
And I’ll watch it again. As I said, I think the average Western Fan would appreciate it.

Internet Movie Database (IMDB) is probably the foremost Movie site on the Net. And it has a lot of good features.
One thing it doesn’t have though (that Rotten Tomatoes does) is an Audience Score.
Which I think is definitely important.
Below you can see why:
The Audience liked The Legend of Ben Hall. “79%“.
That’s a 30% difference with the Critics!!!
Myself I rate it 8 out of 10. 80%
The Audience and I agree!
So there.

Awards

Next:

The Legend of Ben Hall / Part 4  

The Legend of Ben Hall / Part 2

26 Aug

The irony of Ben Hall is that he seems to have been a decent chap. Not a thug.
Through misfortune he became a Bushranger.

Jack Martin was perfectly cast for the role of Ben Hall.

Next:

The Legend of Ben Hall / Part 3

The Legend of Ben Hall / Part 1

25 Aug

I’ve been trying to get hold of this movie for months.

Back in May I did a post called “6 New Westerns” and did a small preview of each. The Legend of Ben Hall was not new however – it had come out in 2016, but I hadn’t heard of it before.
My gut feeling was that this was a pretty good Western and Western fans would probably like it.

I found it to be a quality production all the way around.

Wikipedia says:
“Bushrangers were originally escaped convicts in the early years of the British settlement of Australia who had the survival skills necessary to use the Australian bush as a refuge to hide from the authorities. By the 1820s, the term “bushranger” had evolved to refer to those who abandoned social rights and privileges to take up “robbery under arms” as a way of life, using the bush as their base. Most were simply criminals and thieves.”

In the American Western we’d call these guys Outlaws.
BUT an Outlaw seems to be something different in the eyes of Australians.
Their distinction seems to be that you wouldn’t be referred to as an Outlaw until you had murdered someone.
Then, if caught, you would be hung. Prior to that it seems you could commit
almost any kind of skullduggery and would be jailed/imprisoned instead.
Though I’m sure the prisons of those days might have been worse than death.

The Legend of Ben Hall does not sugar coat Bushrangers. Ben Hall is not portrayed as a Hero.
And, at times, this is not a comfortable movie to watch.

A series of misfortunes forced him into the life of crime.
And according to this film it was a life of deep regret.

Despite being a Bushranger, Ben Hall definitely had certain lines he would never cross.
Killing a man of one of these.
And it’s believed that he never did.

A hell of story.

I couldn’t guess what the life expectancy of your average Bushranger might be.
But it was not likely very high.

Next:

The Legend of Ben Hall / Part 2

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