Grim story of one of the major battles of the Korean War. While negotiators are at work in Panmunjom trying to bring the conflict to a negotiated end, Lt. Joe Clemons is ordered to launch an attack and retake Pork Cop Hill. It's tough on the soldiers who know that the negotiations are under way and no one wants to die when they think it will all soon be over. The hill is of no particular strategic military value but all part of showing resolve during the negotiations. Under the impression that the battle has been won, battalion headquarters orders some of the men withdrawn when in fact they are in dire need of reinforcements and supplies. As the Chinese prepare to counterattack and broadcast propaganda over loudspeakers, the men prepare for what may be their last battle. Written by
The French premiere was received with criticism on grounds of racism, as the character played by Woody Strode was shown to be a coward during the initial attack on the Chinese position. See more »
Real American hand grenades had a narrow yellow band painted around the tapered upper section to quickly identify them as live fragmentation grenades. However, the grenades in the movie have no such bands, indicating that they are either inert training grenades or movie props. See more »
Following the opening credits and opening scenes: A RESERVE POSITION NEAR PORK CHOP HILL--70 MILES FROM THE PEACE CONFERENCE AT PUNMUNJOM-KOREA-1953 See more »
I like this movie and while it lacks the realistic and detailed gore of modern war films, and it does have its glitches and goofs, it did not do a bad job for a 1959 production.The attention to detail given to King Company's organizational structure, and many other technical aspects of the platoon and company level combat operation portrayed was outstanding thanks to Captain Joseph G. Clemons Jr., the movies' technical director and actual commander of King Company during the battle. In addition, there was also an in your face, down in the dirt grittiness about the film that many other war films even to this day lack. One of my favorite parts of this movie was the on going confrontation between Lieutenant Clemons and Private Franklin. The way the conflict played out in the movie brought out the motivational traits from Clemons that makes a great leader and the final acceptance of Franklin of his obligation as a soldier and his willingness to share the fate of his brother in arms, what ever it may be; I love Woody Strode. As one living in the real world, I shaped my views of this film not from the anti-war intent of director Milestone, but from a war movie fan, and real life Grunt perspective. While it does have anti-war overtones courtesy of director Milestone and others, Pork Chop Hill was based on an actual Korean War battle, and book of the same title by U.S. Army historian S.L.A. Marshal, and the movie does contain many factual events such as the friendly fire incident at the command post. I like Pork Chop Hill for the Hollywood production that it is, and would recommend that its critics be ignored, and enjoy the movie.
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