A Walk in the Sun (1945)

Approved  |   |  Drama, War  |  25 December 1945 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 2,647 users  
Reviews: 69 user | 17 critic

During WWII, a platoon of American soldiers trudge through the Italian countryside in search of a bridge they have been ordered to blow up, encountering danger and destruction along the way.



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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
George Tyne ...
Herbert Rudley ...
Richard Benedict ...
Huntz Hall ...
Pvt. Carraway
James Cardwell ...
George Offerman Jr. ...
Steve Brodie ...
Matt Willis ...
Chris Drake ...


In the 1943 invasion of Italy, one American platoon lands, digs in, then makes its way inland to blow up a bridge next to a fortified farmhouse, as tension and casualties mount. Unusually realistic picture of war as long quiet stretches of talk, punctuated by sharp, random bursts of violent action whose relevance to the big picture is often unknown to the soldiers. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


THEY FOUGHT BEST WHEN IT WAS HOPELESS! (print ad for 1951 reissue "Salerno Beachhead" - all caps)


Drama | War


Approved | See all certifications »





Release Date:

25 December 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Salerno Beachhead  »

Box Office


$800,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Film debut of John Ireland. See more »


Other than rank insignia, none of the soldiers' uniforms bear any markings whatsoever. It was standard practice to mark soldiers' helmets with chalk numbers so that they would know which landing craft they were assigned to board for the invasion. It was also standard practice to wear insignia to denote the soldiers' units for identification purposes, although sometimes the shoulder sleeve insignia were removed to impede enemy intelligence gathering. Also, the soldiers' helmets are shown buckled at all times. It was common for soldiers to leave their helmets unbuckled, as there was a belief that, in the event of a nearby explosion, the helmet would break the soldier's neck when it reacted to the concussion. See more »


Rivera: Good thing they invented trains for travelling salesmen.
Friedman: OK, kill me: what's the gag?
Rivera: No gag. But if they didn't have trains, all the travelling salesmen would have to walk.
Friedman: *You're* a travelling salesman; you ain't been taking any trains lately.
Rivera: Whaddaya mean, *I'm* a travelling salesman? I'm a murderer!
Friedman: You're a travelling salesmen. You're selling democracy to the natives.
Rivera: So that's what I am, huh? Whaddaya know. Where'd you get that malarkey, Jake?
Friedman: Out of a book.
Rivera: A book!
Friedman: You're a decadent ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits: It was just a little walk In the warm Italian sun But it was not an easy thing And poets are writing The tale of that fight And songs for children to sing See more »


Referenced in Hollywood Mouth (2008) See more »


Caissons Keep Rolling Along
Written by Edmund L. Gruber, William Bryden and Robert Danford
[incorporated instrumentally to background music during assault on farmhouse]
See more »

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User Reviews

It is hard to harness determination and purpose.
3 July 2002 | by (Muskogee OK) – See all my reviews

This war drama ranks among the best in its genre. An outstanding ensemble cast and intense story makes for an interesting look at the realism of war. This film follows a platoon of American soldiers from the time they land in Europe until they complete their mission...capturing a German occupied farmhouse in World War Two Italy. The talented and diverse cast includes:Dana Andrews, John Ireland, Lloyd Bridges, George Tyne, Huntz Hall and Richard Conte. Kudos also to director Lewis Milestone.

26 of 28 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Farmhouse Tactical Error Skrappy
American war films are the best bettygrablelove
Should I watch this? Jege_87
Should have earned some Oscar consideration! oldsenior
Lewis Milestone--a MAGNIFICENT director of war films! hptaylor
One of the best in the genre tflanster
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