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Time Limit (1957)

Approved  |   |  Drama, War  |  23 October 1957 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 731 users  
Reviews: 19 user | 7 critic

During the Korean War former POW Major Cargill admits to having collaborated with the enemy but military investigator Colonel Edwards wants the details.



(screenplay), (play), 1 more credit »
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Title: Time Limit (1957)

Time Limit (1957) on IMDb 7.3/10

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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Col. William Edwards
Maj. Harry Cargill
Cpl. Jean Evans
Mrs. Cargill
Carl Benton Reid ...
Lt. Gen. J. Connors
Sgt. Baker
Lt. George Miller
Khigh Dhiegh ...
Col. Kim (as Kaie Deei)
Yale Wexler ...
Capt. Joe Connors
Alan Dexter ...
Manning Ross ...
Lt. Harvey
Joe Di Reda ...
Gus (as Joe Di Rida)
James Douglas ...
Kenneth Alton ...
Jack Webster ...
Lt. Harper


Military investigator Colonel Edwards is assigned a case involving Major Cargill, a Korean War POW who is accused of treason. Although Cargill admits his guilt and Edwards' superiors are impatiently pushing Edwards to move this case to court martial, Edwards becomes convinced of Cargill's innocence. Written by Marty McKee <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


This is the face of war you've never seen before!


Drama | War


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

23 October 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Wenn Männer zerbrechen  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When Miller throws his punch, it clearly misses to the left even though the victim's head snaps back. See more »


Maj. Harry Cargill: A man can be a hero all his life, but if in the last month of it, or the last week, or even the last minute, the pressure becomes too great and he breaks, then he's branded for life. You can't ask a man to be a hero forever. There ought to be a time limit.
Lt. Gen. J. Connors: There is no defense for treason.
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User Reviews

Good and still very relevant drama
3 March 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Richard Widmark, Richard Basehart, Rip Torn and Carl Benton Reid star in "Time Limit," a 1957 drama directed by Karl Malden. It's a small drama, based on a play, and very well done. During the Korean War, a military investigator, Colonel Edwards (Widmark) is assigned the case of Major Cargill (Basehart), who was a POW and is accused of treason. Edwards believes Cargill to be innocent of the charges, even though Cargill admits that the charges are correct.

This story is really about making a humane decision rather than following military rules. Since as I write this we are still at war in Iraq, this film remains relevant. The scenes at the prisoner of war camp are excellent and really give one the feel for what these soldiers suffered.

Widmark, Torn and Basehart are especially good - Widmark is a man looking for the answer and striving to be both humane and fair, and Torn is a witness to what occurred - both give terrific performances. Basehart is effective as the accused, who just wants to plead guilty and not explain his actions.

A very thought-provoking drama, certainly a topic that's been covered in bigger films, but still worth seeing.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Time Limit Movie - When will it be on??? carol-467
Where can I purchase a copy of this film litlgirl007
Wow! Great movie. jkpowell
Darned daylight savings time switch! Hukkk
Pan + Scan, or Widescreen? Zinjanthropus
Airing on TCM - 6/25/2010 admrnelson
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