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Objective, Burma! (1945)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Drama | 17 February 1945 (USA)
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A platoon of special ops are tasked to parachute into the remote Burmese jungle and destroy a strategic Japanese radar station, but getting out isn't as easy.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
SSgt. Treacy
...
Lt. Sid Jacobs
...
Cpl. Gabby Gordon
...
Mark Williams
Warner Anderson ...
Col. J. Carter
...
Hogan
...
Lt. Barker (as Stephen Richards)
...
Pvt. Nebraska Hooper (as Dick Erdman)
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Storyline

A group of men parachute into Japanese-occupied Burma with a dangerous and important mission: to locate and blow up a radar station. They accomplish this well enough, but when they try to rendezvous at an old air-strip to be taken back to their base, they find Japanese waiting for them, and they must make a long, difficult walk back through enemy-occupied jungle. Written by John Oswalt <jao@jao.com>

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Genres:

Action | Adventure | Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

17 February 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Objective Burma  »

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie was pulled from release in the UK after just one week. It was banned there after heated protest from British veterans groups and the military establishment. As the Burma campaign was a predominantly British and Australian operation, the picture was taken as a national insult due to the movie's Americanization of the Burma operation. The resentment that many felt was seen as yet another example of Americans believing they had won the war singlehandedly. It was not shown in Britain again until 1952/1953 and then with an apology disclaimer. Incidentally, writer Lester Cole, who co-wrote the somewhat overly patriotic flag-waving script, would be branded an "Un-American" Communist, becoming one of the Hollywood Ten just a few years later. See more »

Goofs

When Captain Nelson orders the supply sergeant to issue correspondent Mark Williams "everything from soup to nuts, complete jump outfit," the sergeant, in addition to a correct paratrooper's chest-mounted reserve parachute, plops a fighter pilot's ripcord-activated seat pack parachute on the table, not the proper, static line-activated backpack parachute used by paratroopers. See more »

Quotes

Pvt. Nebraska Hooper: It's sure peaceful so far.
Cpl. Gabby Gordon: That's the way I like it... peaceful. I already said when I starved to death, I want it to be peaceful.
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Crazy Credits

Opening credits: "I claim we got a beating. We got run out of Burma and its humiliating as well. I'll go over the mountains into India and rake up an army. I'll supply them there, train them, and some day I'll lead them back into Burma." Joseph W. Stilwell GENERAL, U.S. ARMY See more »

Connections

Featured in The Adventures of Errol Flynn (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Masterful, gritty, absorbing - Errol Flynn? -You bet!
11 February 2005 | by (Burbank/Los Angeles California) – See all my reviews

I first saw Objective Burma as a Saturday afternoon movie, probably on WGN TV in Chicago around 1963 at the tender age of 14. I was expecting the usual Errol Flynn fare (which was fine by me) but this blew my socks off! It rates right up there with Cagney's unbelievable turn in Yankee Doodle Dandy or Bogart's African Queen – If you never thought Flynn could act, this flick will turn your head around.

The usual TV Guide description goes something like – "American paratroopers are dropped into Burma to destroy a radar station". Yes, but that's only the first half hour! The real story begins when they find out they can't be picked up and are going to have to 'walk out', and it ain't no Robin Hood swash buckles his way through the castle sequence!

The dialog, music, photography, settings, along with major and minor players all work exquisitely to deliver what I humbly consider to be the finest war movie ever made. The depth is incredible, Raoul Walsh's touch is perfect, Flynn soars beyond what anybody ever thought he could. My God, there's even a scene where a tortured comrade begs to be put out of his misery and Flynn pulls it off. This ain't -Santa Fe Trail, Baby!

Yes, there is some dialog that today would not be politically correct, but, come on – We were at WAR, and I'm sure the Japanese had some equally colorful words to describe us! Yes, there is little mention of the British who were the major heroes of Burma – Well let them go ahead and make their own damn movie and shut the hell up about it! And, sorry, it's NOT 92 minutes long, Walsh takes his time bringing the story along, showing the deteriorating situation, the heat, the worry, the exasperation – If you want MTV, go somewhere else.

So many scenes stand out. Jacobs death, signaling to the supply plane with a mirror, the rendezvous scene, the night battle – Jeez, they're all so damn good. But maybe the one that gets to me the most is in the heat of a skirmish when Flynn's men ask him where to go, what to do – His face contorts into anguish and he gives the unheard of (in Hollywood) answer – But I won't spoil it for you, go see it for yourself.

I moved to LA in 1975 and about 20 years later I happened to be visiting the Los Angeles County Arboretum (formerly Lucky Baldwin's Estate in Baldwin Park next to Santa Anita Race Track) and got to talking with someone in the office about all the movies, television shows and commercials shot there (hundreds). I suggested that someone ought to do a book about it. The gal smiled, reached into a cabinet and handed me a well worn, out of print volume – "You mean like this"? I eyed the index eagerly and almost couldn't believe my eyes when I found Objective Burma there. Oh my God, I'd been coming to the park for over 15 years and never realized that the main Victorian house (popularized in the TV series Fantasy Island) is the exact same building used in the 'native village scene' where the big fight takes place. Later I walked over to the building, climbed onto the porch and chuckled to myself – This is where they set up the machine gun to cover their escape when the Japanese attacked. Over there is where they crossed the 'swamp' and here is where Jacobs died. I actually shivered with the realization that I was standing right on the very spot where a large portion of one of my all time favorite movies was filmed. If you happen to be a fan and are in LA, it's only about 7 dollars to get in, and be sure to bring some unsalted popcorn to feed the ducks, Errol probably did…


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