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Fires on the Plain (1959)
"Nobi" (original title)

 -  Drama | War  -  3 November 1959 (Japan)
8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 2,830 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 31 critic

In the closing days of WWII remnants of the Japanese army in Leyte are abandoned by their command and face certain starvation.

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Title: Fires on the Plain (1959)

Fires on the Plain (1959) on IMDb 8/10

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Cast

Credited cast:
Eiji Funakoshi ...
Tamura
Osamu Takizawa ...
Yasuda
Mickey Curtis ...
Nagamatsu
Mantarô Ushio ...
Sergeant
Kyû Sazanka ...
Army surgeon
Yoshihiro Hamaguchi ...
Officer
Asao Sano ...
Soldier
Masaya Tsukida ...
Soldier
Hikaru Hoshi ...
Soldier
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Shizuo Chûjô
Jun Hamamura
Tomio Hanano
Yûzô Hayakawa ...
(as Yuji Hayakawa)
Keiichi Hosokawa
Tatsuya Ishiguro
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Storyline

It is the Philipines, 1945. The Japanese Imperial Army has been reduced to a ragtag mob hiding in the jungles. Among them is Pvt. Tamura. The situation goes from bad to worse and in the face of the brutal conditions facing the men, some go insane and resort to murder and cannibalism. In the midst of this, Pvt. Tamura tries to survive without giving up his principles. Written by Eugene Ly <euge.ly@utoronto.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 November 1959 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Fires on the Plain  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In order to achieve maximum authenticity, actors were fed very little, and were not permitted to tend to matters of simple hygiene such as brushing their teeth and cutting their nails. As a precaution against serious deterioration of the actors' health, a number of nurses were always on call on the set. Eiji Funakoshi was never specifically told not to eat. He willingly starved himself to help get him into character. The rest of the cast and crew were unaware of this until he collapsed on-set. Production was shut down for two weeks. See more »

Quotes

Quartermaster: Kill yourself only if you have to. Hare are some rations.
Tamura: I'm grateful.
See more »

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User Reviews

A bleak outlook
28 September 1999 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

I recently saw "Nobi" ("Fires On the Plain"), for the second time. Of all Ichikawa's films, and most of his films - (the ones I've seen), even "Tokyo Olympiad", has a strong thread of despair running through them. This is one of the few films (especially as its from the Japanese perspective), that deals, uncompromisingly, with how ordinary soldiers deal with, and are prepared to go, to survive a war where no prisoners were taken. It's a depressing film, but it should be seen by all the people, especially the Generals and Politicians, who think war is an heroic endeavour.


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