IMDb > The Steel Helmet (1951)
The Steel Helmet
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The Steel Helmet (1951) More at IMDbPro »

The Steel Helmet -- Marking Samuel Fuller's official arrival as a mighty cinematic force, this portrait of Korean War soldiers dealing with moral and racial identity crises remains one of the director's most gripping, realistic depictions of the blood and guts of war.


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7.6/10   2,451 votes »
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Down 13% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Samuel Fuller (written by)
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Release Date:
2 February 1951 (USA) See more »
It's the REAL Korean Story! See more »
A ragtag group of American stragglers battles against superior Communist troops in an abandoned Buddhist temple during the Korean War. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
1 win See more »
User Reviews:
Gritty To Say the Least See more (35 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Directed by
Samuel Fuller 
Writing credits
Samuel Fuller (written by)

Produced by
William Berke .... associate producer
Samuel Fuller .... producer
Robert L. Lippert .... executive producer (as Robert Lippert)
Murray Lerner .... associate producer (uncredited)
Original Music by
Paul Dunlap 
Cinematography by
Ernest Miller 
Film Editing by
Philip Cahn 
Art Direction by
Theobold Holsopple 
Set Decoration by
Clarence Steensen  (as Clarence Steenson)
Costume Design by
Alfred Berke 
Makeup Department
George Bruce .... makeup artist
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
John Francis Murphy .... assistant director (as John F. Murphy)
Sound Department
William H. Lynch .... sound (as William Lynch)
Special Effects by
Ben Southland .... special effects
Visual Effects by
Ray Mercer .... optical effects
Camera and Electrical Department
Noble Craig .... grip (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Robert L. Lippert Jr. .... assistant editor
Music Department
Paul Dunlap .... musical director
Other crew
Stanley Price .... dialogue coach

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
85 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Did You Know?

The FBI investigated Fuller and Evans at one point during the HUAC period.See more »
Revealing mistakes: (at around 1 min) Sgt. Zack shoots a door in the temple but no holes appear in the door. In a subsequent scene he does the same thing to another door but this time there are holes in the door,See more »
Sergeant Zack:Did you hear the Colonel? Hear what he said?
Lt. Driscoll:Yeah. Yeah I heard what he said.
Sergeant Zack:Well, what are we waitin' for? Get off the Beach. Get those Krauts. Gotta get off the beach.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in (500) Days of Summer (2009)See more »


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28 out of 29 people found the following review useful.
Gritty To Say the Least, 2 April 2001
Author: telegonus from brighton, ma

I grew up with this movie, which was shown regularly on local television stations at a time when post-1949 films were scarce as hen's teeth on the tube. The film that put writer-director Samuel Fuller on the map, to the extent that he was ever there, it looks less impressive now, but I have a soft spot for it. It is the story of a group of infantrymen, many of them social misfits, during the Korean War, and their heroic efforts in defense of a Buddhist temple during a Communist-led attack. The major character in the film is Sgt. Zack, played to the hilt by a cigar-chewing Gene Evans, who never became a star but whose performance here is powerful and charismatic, flawless in every detail. I've never seen him in anything else where he's half as good as he is here. Evans carries the film like a super-star, and in Steel Helmet, for a short time, he is one. The others are good, too. Steve Brodie is less of a jerk than usual; James Edwards is very sharp, more assertive than in the previous year's Home Of the Brave, which he made with Brodie. As to the film itself, its qualities come from being a sort of tabloid journalist's work of art. It is weakest when preachy about race relations, strongest when men are arguing, shouting and competing with one another as if they had just stepped out of the pages one of those 'adult' comic books they used to have in barbershops. The movie's cheapness gives it a documentary look, and for once GI's in a film look dirty and unshaven. The scenes with the giant Buddha that dominates he temple's interior have an otherworldliness about them that seems serendipitous, not planned, and give the quieter scenes a background of serenity without which the picture might be intolerably violent and bitter.

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Another war film with korean orphan boy theme -- anybody help? PhillipNoir
Combat TV Series richsass
This movie was released on VHS danielj_old999
Short Round unexecuted. beecee101
Recommended Korean War Movies eThink
'I could sure use a Hershey Bar!' mkatzhope
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