The Bridges at Toko-Ri (1954)

Approved  |   |  Drama, Romance, War  |  December 1954 (USA)
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Reviews: 56 user | 24 critic

Set during the Korean War, a Navy fighter pilot must come to terms with with his own ambivalence towards the war and the fear of having to bomb a set of highly defended bridges. The ending of this grim war drama is all tension.



(screenplay), (novel)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Beer Barrel
Keiko Awaji ...
Nestor Gamidge
Richard Shannon ...
Lt. (j.g.) Olds
Capt. Evans (as Willis B. Bouchey)


Set during the Korean War, a Navy fighter pilot must come to terms with with his own ambivalence towards the war and the fear of having to bomb a set of highly defended bridges. The ending of this grim war drama is all tension.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The screen's explosively real drama of love and war! (US 1959 reissue)


Drama | Romance | War


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

December 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Les ponts de Toko-Ri  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The aircraft that Brubaker and his squadron fly is the Grumman F9F-2 Panther. See more »


The aircraft carrier on which most of the action takes place is referenced as the "Savo Island" in this movie as well as the book upon which it is based. However, in reality the aircraft carrier USS Savo Island CVE-78 was a much smaller ship, a Casablanca-class escort carrier, too small to be appropriate for an admiral to use as a flagship. Plus, Savo Island was decommissioned shortly after World War Two, several years before the story takes place. Instead the actual ship used in the movie is USS Oriskany CV-34, an Essex-class fleet carrier which really did participate in the Korean conflict. Several scenes clearly show her ship number "34" on the flight deck. See more »


Cmdr. Wayne Lee: [on photo recon mission] All I want to do is take their picture but look how mad they get.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: With Task Force 77 U.S. Navy Off the coast of Korea November, 1952 See more »


Featured in The Fifties (1997) See more »

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User Reviews

Superb film
22 March 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a truly superb film on any number of grounds. First, and generally unknown, it is based on a real incident, the so called "Battle of Carlson's Canyon" which was waged early in the Korean War in an attempt to interdict North Korean supplies on their way to the front. James Michener had gone out to the carrier ESSEX (CV-9) and had been very impressed with the men of VF-172, a Banshee fighter squadron. The book is astonishingly realistic...if one compares what he wrote as a novel with the contemporary Navy strike reports (which were then highly classified), it is amazing how much he got "right." It is also a good look at carrier aviation in the last days of the "straight-deck" carrier with hydraulic catapults and a paddle-waving landing deck officer...all that disappeared after Korea with the introduction of the angled deck, the steam catapult, and the Fresnel-lens mirror landing system. The book is in my view the finest air war novel ever written, bar none, and the movie is the same for the film genre. Incidentally, when made into a film, Grumman Panthers were used in place of Banshees, and one of the pilots who flew in the making of the film was a very young Lt. j.g. named Alan Shepherd--later one of the Mercury and Apollo astronauts. Not to be missed!!!

41 of 49 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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