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Pride of the Marines (1945)

Marine hero Al Schmid is blinded in battle and returns home to be rehabilitated. He readjusts to his civilian life with the help of his soon to be wife.

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Writers:

(screen play), (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Lee Diamond
John Ridgely ...
Jim Merchant
...
Virginia Pfeiffer
...
Ella Mae Merchant
...
Loretta Merchant (as Ann Todd)
Warren Douglas ...
Kebabian
...
Bill aka Irish
Tom D'Andrea ...
Tom
...
Doctor
...
Ainslee (as Stephen Richards)
...
Johnny Rivers
...
Capt. Burroughs
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Storyline

Married couple Jim & Ella Merchant set up their single friend Al Schmid on a blind date with Ruth Hartley. The two hit it off and begin dating. A welder, one day at the workplace, Al learns of a friend's enlistment in the Marine Corps and decides to join himself. Al and Ruth have a last date, with Al insisting that she forget about him as he is about to go into combat. However, when Ruth goes to meet his departure train, he is overjoyed and gives her an engagement ring. Assigned to Guadalcanal, Al and his squad are tasked with preventing the Japanese from breaching their line. During a night attack, many of his fellow Marines are slain, but Al ends up single-handedly saving the day, killing scores of Japanese. However, he is wounded by a suicide bomber near the end of the the battle. At the hospital, Al learns that he is blind, a condition that persists even after surgery. Feeling sorry for himself, he dictates a letter to a nurse, informing Ruth that he is relieving her of any ... Written by Jon C. Hopwood

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

24 August 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El orgullo de los marines  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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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

On the train to Philadelphia, Al (John Garfield) talks to Lee (Dane Clark) about the difficulty he anticipates in getting a job for a blind man. Lee responds that because he, Lee, is Jewish, he has trouble finding a job as well and then waxes philosophic about a day when people are discriminated against for any reason. But in real life, it was Garfield who was Jewish. See more »

Goofs

Al tells Ruth he doesn't want her to stay up late seeing him off at the train, but he departs during the day. See more »

Quotes

Ruth Hartley: What makes men do such crazy things?
Al Schmid: Women!
See more »

Connections

Featured in The John Garfield Story (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Auld Lang Syne
(1788) (uncredited)
Traditional Scottish 17th century music
Lyrics by Robert Burns
Sung by all on Mew Year's Eve
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User Reviews

Garfield's best!
13 July 2001 | by See all my reviews

This former Leatherneck appreciates more and more through the years John Garfield's gut-wrenching performance in the docu-drama PRIDE OF THE MARINES (1945), the true story of war hero Al Schmid who was blinded in combat on Guadalcanal by a Jap grenade. The picture, released a year before BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES, was the first movie to deal in depth with the problems faced by returning vets. Scripted by Albert Maltz, who would eventually be jailed as one of the Hollywood 10, the film would catch major flack from Red-baiters at decade's end because of its politically-charged dialogue in one scene set in a veterans hospital, during which embittered soldiers forcefully voice both their hopes in and suspicions of a post-war society.

The three layers of plotline dramatize an accurate microcosm of American life during a pivotal time period. PRIDE explores in its pre-war first part Garfield's lower-class, working-man roots as only he could portray urban struggles and dreams during the Great Depression. The harrowing middle portion, claustrophobically confined to a cramped and stinking Pacific island foxhole (shared with Dane Clark and Anthony Caruso to form a 3-man machine gun team), graphically captures the fears and horrors of war as few films have.

But it is this citizen/soldier's readjustment in the final sequences, aided by compassionate nurse Rosemary deCamp and home-town fiancee Eleanor Parker (in a performance worthy of a Supporting Oscar nomination) that really packs an emotional wallop. Doubting his self-worth, lost in a sightless world (his post-operative cry of "Why don't God strike me dead!" is chilling), and struggling to comprehend the difference between love and pity, Garfield's perfectly modulated performance combines all the elements of his unique persona (rebellious icon, tough guy, romantic leading man, idealistic spokesman).

Given his devotion throughout the war years to the Hollywood Canteen that he and Bette Davis created, the story must have been very close to his heart. This may be his finest screen role in a career filled with meaningful performances.


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