MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 2,424 this week

They Were Expendable (1945)

 -  Drama | War  -  20 December 1945 (USA)
7.3
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 5,130 users  
Reviews: 76 user | 26 critic

A dramatized account of the role of the American PT Boats in the defense of the Philippines in World War II.

Directors:

(as John Ford Captain U.S.N.R.) , (uncredited)

Writers:

(book), (screenplay) (as Frank Wead Comdr. U.S.N. {Ret}) , 3 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

ON DISC

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: March

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they are excited to see in March.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 44 titles
created 26 Oct 2012
 
a list of 39 titles
created 01 Apr 2013
 
a list of 25 titles
created 09 Sep 2013
 
a list of 26 titles
created 14 Oct 2013
 
a list of 40 titles
created 18 Oct 2013
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: They Were Expendable (1945)

They Were Expendable (1945) on IMDb 7.3/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of They Were Expendable.

User Polls

Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

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 ... See full summary »

Director: Edward Dmytryk
Stars: John Wayne, Anthony Quinn, Beulah Bondi
Biography | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A biography of Navy flier-turned-screenwriter Frank W. "Spig" Wead.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Dan Dailey
Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

After Custer and the 7th Cavalry are wiped out by Indians, everyone expects the worst. Capt. Nathan Brittles is ordered out on patrol but he's also required to take along Abby Allshard, ... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Joanne Dru, John Agar
Battleground (1949)
Action | War | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A squad of the 101st Airborne Division copes with being trapped in the besieged city of Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge.

Director: William A. Wellman
Stars: Van Johnson, John Hodiak, Ricardo Montalban
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

During WWII, a submarine's second in command inherits the problem of torpedoes that don't explode. When on shore, he is eager to win back his ex-wife.

Director: George Waggner
Stars: John Wayne, Patricia Neal, Ward Bond
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Construction workers in World War II in the Pacific are needed to build military sites, but the work is dangerous and they doubt the ability of the Navy to protect them. After a series of ... See full summary »

Director: Edward Ludwig
Stars: John Wayne, Susan Hayward, Dennis O'Keefe
Drama | War | Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Major Kirby leads The Wildcats squadron into the historic WWII battle of Guadalcanal.

Director: Nicholas Ray
Stars: John Wayne, Robert Ryan, Don Taylor
Fort Apache (1948)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

At Fort Apache, an honorable and veteran war captain finds conflict when his regime is placed under the command of a young, glory hungry lieutenant colonel with no respect for the local Indian tribe.

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Henry Fonda, Shirley Temple
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Aboard the freighter Glencairn, the lives of the crew are lived out in fear, loneliness, suspicion and cameraderie. The men smuggle drink and women aboard, fight with each other, spy on ... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: John Wayne, Thomas Mitchell, Ian Hunter
Certificate: Passed Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In the wake of Pearl Harbor, a young lieutenant leaves his expectant wife to volunteer for a secret bombing mission which will take the war to the Japanese homeland.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Van Johnson, Robert Walker
Certificate: Passed Action | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A dramatization of the World War II Battle of Iwo Jima.

Director: Allan Dwan
Stars: John Wayne, John Agar, Adele Mara
Bombardier (1943)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Training of bombardiers in semi-documentary style, with personal stories and a battle climax.

Directors: Richard Wallace, Lambert Hillyer
Stars: Eugene L. Eubank, Pat O'Brien, Randolph Scott
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Lt. John Brickley (as Robert Montgomery Comdr. U.S.N.R.)
...
...
...
...
'Boats' Mulcahey C.B.M.
...
Ens. 'Snake' Gardner
...
Ens. 'Andy' Andrews
...
Major James Morton
Arthur Walsh ...
Seaman Jones
...
Lt. (J.G.) 'Shorty' Long / Radio Announcer
...
Ens. George Cross
Jeff York ...
Ens. Tony Aiken
Murray Alper ...
'Slug' Mahan T.M. 1c
Harry Tenbrook ...
'Squarehead' Larsen SC 2c
Jack Pennick ...
'Doc'
Edit

Storyline

Shortly after Pearl Harbor, a squadron of PT-boat crews in the Philipines must battle the Navy brass between skirmishes with the Japanese. The title says it all about the Navy's attitude towards the PT-boats and their crews. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Book That Thrilled Millions See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 December 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Fuimos los sacrificados  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

PT boats were torpedo-armed fast attack craft used by the US Navy in World War II. "PT" is the US hull classification symbol for "Patrol Torpedo". The PT boat squadrons were nicknamed "the mosquito fleet" because of their small size, high speed and maneuverability. They were made of mahogany plywood and powered by three 12-cylinder gasoline-fueled aircraft engines. They were capable of speeds of up to 40 knots (46 mph). They carried four Mark 8 torpedoes, two twin M2 .50-cal. machine guns and, in some cases, a 20mm Oerlikon cannon. See more »

Goofs

When Lt. Sandy Davys attends the 'party', Lt. JG 'Rusty' Ryan takes a big swig of his drink, spilling some of it down his face and shirt, yet in the next scene, he's completely dry. See more »

Quotes

Lt. 'Rusty' Ryan: Listen sister, I don't dance!
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: Manila Bay In the Year of Our Lord Nineteen hundred and Forty-one See more »

Connections

Featured in Going Hollywood: The War Years (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Anchors Aweigh
(uncredited)
Written by Charles A. Zimmermann (music) & Alfred Hart Miles (lyrics)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
perhaps the best of the American war flicks made during the war
26 January 2006 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

This movie is so exceptionally well-written, acted and directed. Although I am a big fan of some of John Wayne's other war pictures such as The Flying Tigers and The Fighting Sea Bees, these films are not exactly realistic and make it look like Wayne and his friends could have almost single-handedly beaten the Japanese! But, with They Were Expendible, the over-the-top heroism and exploits are instead replaced with grim determination against the odds and a quiet dignity. Because of that, to me, the impact of this film was much more lasting and heart-felt. Realism is key to this picture.

Oh, and by the way, Robert Montgomery gets top billing because when the film was made he was the bigger star--Wayne's rise to the top in Hollywood was still to come. I really see this more as Wayne's film as his part seemed BIGGER and he seemed to get at least as much screen time as Montgomery.

This would be an excellent film for teens, as it focuses on glory and heroism without glorifying death or trivializing our sacrifices.


26 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
This Movie is Brilliant! Friesen_471
Tune steve@mx21.tiki.ne.jp
Director Ford dissed Wayne during filming jjj58205-1
Sabotaged PT Boat olympiaea
the true story remkus
Was this the same PT Boat Base... Esperite
Discuss They Were Expendable (1945) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?