A soldier survives a bombing in which his three fellow soldiers were killed. When he recovers he discovers he has amnesia, and since his companions' bodies were burned beyond recognition, ... See full summary »
A soldier survives a bombing in which his three fellow soldiers were killed. When he recovers he discovers he has amnesia, and since his companions' bodies were burned beyond recognition, the army doesn't know which one of the four he is. He goes AWOL and searches out the families of the three dead soldiers, hoping to find out his own identity. Written by
Richard Arlen was one of those guys you never hear about, but always found great drama to be in, whether by agent or by his own choosing.
The story here is about an amnesiac soldier found in a farmhouse with three dead bodies. For dog tags are found. The bodies are burned, and no one from their unit is available for identification.
Our main character finds himself on a hospital ship and back in the states, and is given the names and addresses of the four men in hopes it will jar his memory. He is frustrated by his Amnesia so much that he runs out and visits each address on his own in order to find out his identity.
Arlen is great in such roles. The plot itself is full of some contrivances and holes, but the characters are multi dimensional and very credible, which makes for the best films, credible characters in incredible circumstances.
The low key atmosphere works great to help sustain our interest, because this is a mystery above all else, and we have a sneaking suspicion how it will turn out, but not the exact outcome.
Everything is done beautifully, and this works like a charm because you truly care about not only our unidentified soldier, but also about all the characters. A directorial achievement. A hidden gem.
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