I hope this photo shows up here. I searched back to near the bottom of page 2 to find what I was looking for. Yesterday I was watching the DVD battle sequence and was constantly pausing and reversing to see if I could spot small details that I had been missing because there is so much happening and the edits go by so quickly. This may be old news to most of you, but here's what I discovered for myself. I saw the detailed continuity of those last desperate moments.
After Crockett has yelled to his men to throw up a barricade, he runs west, away from the stockade and chapel area.
We next see him on the flagpole hill as the Texans roll the cannon down, and Crockett plays King of the Hill as he knocks one rider off his horse and pushes another horse and rider off the hill.
Crockett picks up his rifle and jumps over the hastily erected barricade where the cannon is now being turned to face the masses of approaching Mexicans. One Texan has the cannon plunger in hand and is also jumping across. We are to assume he just finished loading that cannon for the last time.
A Texan with a bandanna around his forehead, is holding the torch, and that guy touches off the cannon while Crockett is a few feet to his right.
The spectacular cannon blast rips into the approaching line of troops, sending many of them flying backwards.
At that same instant, the Texan who fired the cannon is shot and he drops his torch.
What I saw for the first time, in the far right of the screen, is Crockett reaching down and retrieving the torch.
Now I know how Crockett ended up with a torch while retreating from the barricade and toward the chapel.
As Crockett runs for the door, there's two red coated Mexicans who I never before understood what they were supposed to be doing there. I finally saw that they had been raising their rifles as if to shoot defenders (unseen) who would have been standing on the wall that connects Travis's HQ to the chapel. It's kind of sloppy looking, but that seems to be what they're doing until they see Crockett, who throws his rifle at them, leaving himself open to be lanced.
I used to wonder what a lancer was doing on foot. This time I saw that his horse was nearby, so he easily could have been one of the guys who lept the palisade and became dismounted.
It even seems that the Mexican soldiers who are already in the chapel and standing around like confused tourists, for a moment are startled to see the approaching Crockett and even look like they might pursue him before they seem to disappear. This would have been reminiscent of The Last Command where Crockett shoves the torch into the gunpowder just as the Mexicans are converging on him from all sides. Maybe these guys didn't pursue him toward the "powder magazine" because they saw The Last Command and were not going to fall for the same trick again.
For me, the biggest discovery was seeing Crockett pick up the torch after the cannon fired at the barricade. That's the image captured by this photo.
After all these years of watching my favorite movie, it's great to discover something new, even if it's only new to me.