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The production had difficulties in casting extras for the opening retreat sequence. A production assistant located some dancers in a musical and they were able to be fitted out in costumes for the opener. Director Samuel Fuller had them feign battle weariness by stacking their military packs and uniforms with weights. See more »
The movie takes place in Korea during the winter, with freezing temperatures, but the soldiers' breath is never exposed to the cold air, confirming that the film's entire outside shooting was studio bound. See more »
You're not aiming at a man. You're aiming at the enemy. Once you're over that hump, you're a rifleman.
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Tense, and brooding warlike movie, well set in Korea
This Korean war(1951-1953) drama is the fare of American GIs in Korea early 1951 and stands as one of the best warlike film . A band of Chinese troops follows a soldiers group posing as a regiment. Then, they take refuge into a cave stronghold but the group is besieged. They simply do their best to survive a terrifying situation. But the superiors are murdered and the corporal Demmo takes command.
The film is dedicated to the queen of battles-the United States Infantry. The producers give grateful thanks to the Department of the Army for its encouragement , advice and active cooperation in the preparation and production of this picture. The film is based on true events, a Chinese communist offensive formed by 350.000 soldiers who vanquished 8º Army commanded by Ridgway and withdraw across southern. Posteriorly, American Army and UN multi-national troops undergo a contra-offensive and retrieve lost territory until 38 parallel.
This is a conventional story bolstered considerably by director Fuller's flair for warlike drama and action. Dark and thoughtful and hurriedly made, the movie gains strength as it goes on, and shows a tremendous grasp of the tale as an unit. Excellent performance by male leads, boasting and most restrained acting by Richard Basehart as the corporal taking the command responsibility. Top-notch Gene Evans as brave sergeant and excellent secondaries, Craig Hill, Skip Homeier, Michael O'Shea and appearance an uncredited James Dean. Samuel Fuller's most fluid and strongest film-making lies in his war pictures from ¨Steel helmet,Fixed bayonets, Merril's marauders, Hell and high water, and specially : Big red one¨ all are tremendously exciting and stirring. Rating : Better than average. Well worth watching.
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