A sensitive, educated black man's World War II-time problems. This is essentially the duplicate of his peace-time problems which are pointed up in a flashback of his life, and primarily of ... See full summary »
A sensitive, educated black man's World War II-time problems. This is essentially the duplicate of his peace-time problems which are pointed up in a flashback of his life, and primarily of his war-time adventures with four white soldiers on a dangerous reconnaissance mission on a Japanese-held island. Written by
IMPORTANT STEP TOWARDS THE END OF BLACK STEREOTYPES IN HOLLYWOOD
The importance of this film cannot be overstated. 1 - It gave us JAMES EDWARDS, thus ending Hollywood's Heroic-Black-Man Prohibition. Without Mr. Edwards there would be no Sidney Poitier, no Denzel. 2 - This film, hot on the heels of President Truman's Executive Order integrating America's segregated military, examines the possible pressures of this new policy on both the races - without demeaning either. 3 - Until this time Hollywood had managed to fight two world wars on screen without any major assistance from America's Black population except as domestics. 4 - The existence of HOME OF THE BRAVE put pressure on subsequent films (which only a scant few bowed to)to present a more accurate racial and ethnic portrayal of America's fighting forces. So (with the exception of SAHARA) every Black man in a Hollywood war film owes thanks to Mr. Edwards.
The irony is Mr. Edwards' last film, PATTON, has him portraying a valet. The insult is that Patton's most important victory - The Battle of The Bulge
was facilitated in great part by the contribution of The Big Red One - a
battalion of Black truck drivers - who risked all to keep Patton's front supplied until the weather cleared enough to allow cargo flights. This historic fact (the race of the drivers in this segregated unit) is ignored in the film leaving Mr. Edwards with the only Black speaking part in a sweeping biography about a WWII general - isn't this where we came in?
If you examine Mr. Edward's filmography (by which I mean screen the films) it is difficult to understand the spottiness of his career and his relative obscurity. Part of the explanation may lie in the murky machinations of HUAC, McCarthyism, the Hollywood Blacklist and Mr. Edwards' worldwide tour with this film (it included a stop in the then Soviet Union). If you have any information regarding this aspect of his life please post it here.
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