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Back to Bataan (1945)

Approved | | Drama, War | 31 May 1945 (USA)
In 1942, after the fall of the Philippines to the Japanese, U.S. Army Col. Joseph Madden stays behind to organize the local resistance against the Japanese invaders.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Capt. Andrés Bonifácio
...
...
...
...
Alex Havier ...
Sgt. Bernessa (as J. Alex Havier)
'Ducky' Louie ...
...
Lt. Cmdr. Waite
...
Gen. Homma
...
Bindle Jackson
...
Japanese Captain
...
Señor Buenaventura J. Bello
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Storyline

The US Army's defense of its Philippines colony and the allied Malay countries/colonies behind it counted on its island fortress of Corregidor on Luzon -and a few others- but loses it in the 6 May 1942 Japanese combined forces attack. Colonel Joseph Madden is among the escaping survivors who are ordered by general Douglas McArthur to organize a guerrilla. As he finds many native Filipinos inclined to resist the occupier's vision of returning to the South Asian fold under a paternalistic empire which doesn't hesitate to 'spank the unruly', but is mainly civilian, unprepared, inept in military matters, Madden appeals to the legendary anti-US freedom fighter Andres Bonifácio's homonymous grandson Captain Andrés Bonifácio, who is luckily rescued from a POW dead march, to inspire the resistance -once his own fighting spirit is rekindled- with him in a still very unsure war, retaliated by bloody, ten to one repression. When the Japanese realize the people side against them, they stage fake ... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

"GET YOUR WEAPON FROM A JAP!",,,but you'll have to kill him first! (original poster) See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 May 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Invisible Army  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film marked John Wayne's first encounter with Americans who had openly Communist beliefs. During filming screenwriter Ben Barzman and director Edward Dmytryk were outspoken about their Communist and atheist views. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the film, when the POW camp is liberated, a soldier throws a grenade against a portion of the fence. It explodes, but it is the adjacent section that ends up being breached. See more »

Quotes

Maj. Hasko: I send out 100 men, they find nothing. I send out ten men, they don't come back.
See more »

Crazy Credits

8 minutes into the film: "Americans had been freed- hundreds of them. This was a promise of what was to come. Soon the whole world would be free. But behind the rescue of these men, behind the triumphs yet to come, there is another story- the story of the resistance of the Filipino people. This is the story of that resistance. It begins in one of the darkest hours in our history on the island fortress of Corregidor." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Into the Breach: 'Saving Private Ryan' (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

Back to Bataan
20 November 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I agree that this is a terrific movie, and by "History vs. Hollywood" standards rates fairly high. The point of the movie is to characterize the Japanese soldiers as brutal and often sadistic in their treatment of the enemy. In the history of modern warfare, the Japanese in WWII were by far the most inhumane. There is nothing in this movie that is unfair in the portrayal of Japanese treatment of Filipinos. Later, American and other Allied POW's were subjected to even worse horrors. The film also correctly characterizes the Filipinos as tough, hard fighters, and unfortunate victims of a superior Imperialist (militarist) society, which was run by the Japanese Army, and victimized with extreme prejudice. I will disagree with one contributor to this forum who offers that the brutal treatment of Filipinos was one of the reasons for entering the war. Not so. The reason for entering the war was the gradual aggressive military movements of Japan spanning the previous 20 years, culminating in the invasion of China followed by the attack on Pearl Harbor.


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