5.9/10
2,448
37 user 12 critic

Never So Few (1959)

Approved | | Drama, War | 7 December 1959 (USA)
During WW2, the American O.S.S. mounts covert operations against the Japanese army in the jungles of Burma.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
...
...
...
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Sgt. Jim Norby
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...
...
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Margaret Fitch
...
Col. Reed
...
Richard Lupino ...
Mike Island
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Storyline

Captain Tom Reynolds and his band of skilled O.S.S. operatives are in WWII Burma to train the Kachin natives in modern warfare. But jungle combat, particularly against a Japanese army as familiar with the terrain as the Kachin, is more grueling than Reynolds had reckoned. Some respite is found in the arms of beautiful Carla, but after Chinese rebels cross the border to loot and murder American soldiers, Reynolds abandons all notions of "military protocol" and seeks requital. Written by Chris Stone <jstone@bellatlantic.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Kiss by kiss the time ran out and never so few were the moments left for love! See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

7 December 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Campaign Burma  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,480,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$3,020,000, 31 December 1959

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$5,270,000, 31 December 1959
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This movie is based on the real-life story of World War II's OSS Detachment 101. This was an OSS Operations Group designed to specialize in activities in the China-Burma-India region in collaboration with the Kachin Rangers and other Allied special operations units. See more »

Goofs

Carla Vesari's petticoats, high heels, make-up, and other fashions, are typical of the late '50s, not WWII. See more »

Quotes

Capt. Tom Reynolds: [Being called in front of his superiors on account of the incursion into China to retaliate for the Chinese warlord's attack on the American supply detachment] I've just seen 34 American GI's with their heads blown off by Chinese troops.
Capt. Tom Reynolds: [Grabs his duffel bag and theatrically dumps its contents on the table: dog tags, wallets and other personal effects of the slain American soldiers] And I wanna' know why.
Gen. Sloan: [Reacting to the pile of dog tags etc. on the table in front of him] This is sickening.
Col. Fred Parkson: ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in Steve McQueen: The King of Cool (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

Kachin Koncerto
(uncredited)
Music by Charles Wolcott
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Routine Rat Pack(-) flick spiced up by Steve McQueen
20 May 2004 | by See all my reviews

This is a typical "Rat Pack" (minus Deano, Joey and Sammy) theatrical romp; big on action and small on fact based substance, but entertaining nonetheless.

The big surprise is Steve McQueen, appearing in one of his first major films. Up to this point, he has come to prominence in the TV series Wanted, Dead or Alive, but has yet to make the jump to film star. "Never So Few" is his springboard. A spat between Sinatra and Sammy Davis, Jr. gets McQueen the supporting role that launches his movie career under the direction of John Sturges (who later directs The Magnificent Seven and The Great Escape).

McQueen plays Corporal Bill Ringa (Why'd they pick that name...a pseudonym for "Ringer" maybe?), a self promoting "SGT. Bilko" type con man making a few fast bucks "in the rear with the gear" of the CBI. When Ringa is assigned as OSS Capt. Tom Reynold's (Frank Sinatra) jeep driver, during the latter's visit to the rear area headquarters, he impresses the officer with his unorthodox approach to selling illegal whiskey and fighting with MPs (anyone that hates MPs has got my vote). Reynolds gets Ringa transferred to his outfit and the two go about smashing the Japanese and renegade Chinese warlords.

McQueen shows the strong almost overpowering "2d in command" role he perfects in The Magnificent Seven a year later. His on-screen presence in these two films propels McQueen to leading man status thereafter.

Not a very historically accurate film, and some of the acting is overplayed, but McQueen is strong throughout and the film is fast paced and entertaining.


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