Up 22,603 this week

Merrill's Marauders (1962)

Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.7/10 from 1,327 users  
Reviews: 28 user | 14 critic

Brigadier General Frank D. Merrill leads the 3,000 American volunteers of his 5307th Composite Unit (Provisional), aka "Merrill's Marauders", behind Japanese lines across Burma to Myitkyina... See full summary »



(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
0Check in

Watch Now

From $3.99 on Amazon Instant Video


Editors' Spotlight

Leonard Nimoy: 1931-2015

Best known for his work on "Star Trek," actor and director Leonard Nimoy died on Friday in Los Angeles. Read our full story on his varied career, and view our memorial photo gallery.

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 47 titles
created 13 Sep 2011
a list of 547 titles
created 21 Aug 2013
a list of 1519 titles
created 13 Jan 2014
a list of 61 titles
created 9 months ago
a list of 557 titles
created 8 months ago

Related Items

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Merrill's Marauders (1962)

Merrill's Marauders (1962) on IMDb 6.7/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Merrill's Marauders.



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

War | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

The story of a U.S. naval ship and its crew in the Pacific, 1943-1945.

Director: Joseph Pevney
Stars: Jeff Chandler, George Nader, Lex Barker
The Meanest Men in the West (TV Movie 1978)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.4/10 X  

A compilation of two episodes of "The Virginian" TV western series. Season 1 episode "It Tolls For Thee" (1962) guest star Lee Marvin, and season 6 episode "Reckoning" (1967) guest star Charles Bronson.

Directors: Charles S. Dubin, Samuel Fuller
Stars: Charles Grodin, Lee Marvin, Charles Bronson
White Dog (1982)
Drama | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A trainer attempts to retrain a vicious dog that's been raised to kill Black people.

Director: Samuel Fuller
Stars: Kristy McNichol, Christa Lang, Vernon Weddle
Action | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The story of a sergeant and the inner core members of his unit as they try to serve in and survive World War II.

Director: Samuel Fuller
Stars: Lee Marvin, Mark Hamill, Robert Carradine
Crime | Film-Noir | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A pickpocket unwittingly lifts a message destined for enemy agents and becomes a target for a Communist spy ring.

Director: Samuel Fuller
Stars: Richard Widmark, Jean Peters, Thelma Ritter
Documentary | Biography
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In a documentary about Samuel Fuller, the spectator gets different impressions about the Hollywood director and his films. The film is divided into the three sections: The Typewriter, the ... See full summary »

Director: Adam Simon
Stars: Samuel Fuller, Tim Robbins, Jim Jarmusch
Hiawatha (1952)
Drama | Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Hiawatha, a member of the Ojibway tribe, is on a peace mission to the Dakotah tribe. He meets and falls in love with Minniehaha. The romance is obstructed by a threatened war between the ... See full summary »

Director: Kurt Neumann
Stars: Vince Edwards, Yvette Duguay, Keith Larsen
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Director: Michel Deville
Stars: Michel Piccoli, Lea Massari, Michel Aumont
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

When four rowdy cowhands ride into a small town and make trouble, no one seems willing or able to take them on, not even Sam Christy, the toughest man in town. But then there is a murder.

Director: Joseph Pevney
Stars: Jeff Chandler, John Saxon, Dolores Hart
Hi, Nellie! (1934)
Comedy | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

The managing editor for a newspaper, in hot water with his boss, is demoted to writing the "Nellie Nelson" heart throb column, where he gets the unexpected opportunity to crack a major story.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Stars: Paul Muni, Glenda Farrell, Ned Sparks
Adventure | Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Exposé of two news photographers covering the People's Revolution in the Philippines.

Director: Samuel Fuller
Stars: Jennifer Beals, Luc Merenda, Patrick Bauchau
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Small time racketeer Marc Fury agrees to plead self-defense for a murder committed by gang boss Joe Farrow in exchange for Farrow's I.O.U. for $50,000. He is acquitted but is ordered ... See full summary »

Director: Ted Tetzlaff
Stars: Victor Mature, Terry Moore, William Bendix


Complete credited cast:
2nd Lt. Lee Stockton
Capt. Abraham Lewis Kolodny, MD
Will Hutchins ...
Sgt. Kolowicz
Luz Valdez ...
Burmese girl
Gen. Joseph Stilwell
Charlie Briggs ...
Muley (as Charles Briggs)
Chuck Roberson ...
Chuck Hayward ...
Jack C. Williams ...
Cpl. Doskis
Vaughan Wilson ...
Pancho Magalona ...


Brigadier General Frank D. Merrill leads the 3,000 American volunteers of his 5307th Composite Unit (Provisional), aka "Merrill's Marauders", behind Japanese lines across Burma to Myitkyina, pushing beyond their limits and fighting pitched battles at every strong-point. Written by Martin H. Booda <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


True story! Incredible story! See more »


Adventure | War | Drama


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

16 March 1962 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Durchbruch auf Befehl  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)


(archive footage)| (archive footage)| (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In the battle at Shaduzup, the huge triangular sets of concrete blocks in the rail yard, where the close-in fighting took place, were originally built to support huge fuel tanks used to fill up the engines as they were leaving the yard. See more »


The British officer incorrectly had his slouch hat pinned up on the right side. Commonwealth troops have always worn the slouch hat pinned up on the left side to accommodate left shoulder (sloped) arms. See more »


Bannister: Do you know what I'm going to do after the war? I'm going to get married and have six kids. Then I'm going to line them up and tell them what Burma was like. And if they don't cry, I'll beat the hell out of them.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: JANUARY 1942 See more »


Featured in The Typewriter, the Rifle & the Movie Camera (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A Movie that Shows Us What Real Heroes are All About
11 February 2006 | by (St. Davids, Pennsylvania, USA) – See all my reviews

The best way to understand a man's emotions are to look into his eyes. What does the look on his face tell you about his mood? Sam Fuller knows that. This is a movie about the faces of ordinary men in battle. What brings them joy, what makes them angry, what fatigues them. Fuller, a former soldier himself, knows how to convey these emotions in a way few filmmakers ever have been able to.

In 1944, "Merrill's Marauders", a group of American volunteers, trekked across Burma to destroy several key Japanese bases. There was a legitimate fear that the Japanese would trek through Burma to India and link up with Hitler's forces in Europe. The Marauders played an important part in stopping this link-up, at great cost to their own lives.

The movie makes us understand what it must have been like to be a soldier in World War II. It's important to realize that the Marauders were expecting a reprieve very early on the campaign, and were pushed far beyond normal physical and mental limitations to complete their mission. Merrill (brilliantly portrayed by Jeff Chandler) has a heart condition himself, but keeps it a secret from his men, who come to loathe him – until he collapses from a stroke, and they realize he has been pushing himself just as hard, if not harder than, his own troops.

Just what causes the stress they endure? First, the death of their friends. Lt. Stockton (Ty Hardin, in one of his best performances) expresses frustration at having to write letters home to the families of the dead in his platoon. Gradually, the number of families he must write to increases. The men left under his command are trudging through several hundred miles of swamp, fearing detection by the enemy at any given moment. They are without sufficient food, infected with malaria and typhus, and lack enough medical supplies. Then have to fight off or meticulously avoid every enemy unit they encounter. By the end of the film, every man we saw at the start with a clean shirt and freshly shaven face is either dead, or wearing tattered clothes, unkempt hair and most likely wounded or exhausted from disease. These are normal men who miss their homes and families, and want to go home badly – they don't let the audience forget that, because it's almost all they talk about – and rightly so.

Although some of the battle scenes seem sanitized compared to post 1965-standards (the usual fake-looking "seizure" death scenes, bloodless hand-to-hand combat), the aftermath is shockingly realistic and haunting. There is one scene in which Lt. Stockton slowly walks across a maze of concrete tank-traps, where a pitched close-quarters battle has just been fought, and sees and endless tangled mass of bodies – both American and Japanese.

Fuller lets his camera linger on these moments. There is one scene where Merrill gives an order to his subordinate and Fuller keeps the camera on the officer's shocked and disappointed face for just long enough to let us start thinking about what is going inside the nameless man's head. Likewise, he makes the Philippine locations come to vivid life, especially the dark, confined sequence in the swamp. Only a few scenes set in pine forests near the end of the film look jarringly out-of-place.

"Merrill's Marauders" only weakness is in its almost forced jingoistic patriotism. The opening scene, a montage of documentary footage narrated by Andrew Duggan, sets us up for a flag-waving movie about American heroes single-handedly wiping out the Japanese Empire without effort, as has been seen in countless other war films. Likewise, the film's conclusion speaks of the heroism and dedication of the Marauders as if they and the entire U.S. military were immortal saints. These segments seemed tacked on, and I would bet in a minute that the military, who aided in production of the film, required that these scenes be included. Oh, yeah, and the ridiculous music score does not help much, either.

Am I patriotic? Yes. Do I support the American military? Of course. Who makes a war movie web site in order to cut down war movies? I love 'em. The body of the film is about ordinary fighting men and their dedication to each other. Not to a cause. I'm sure that when men were in the trenches together during WWII (and any other war, for that matter) their primary dedication was to their buddy next to them, not for a glorious cause.

I have a soft spot in my heart because Frank Merrill was my grandmother's cousin. So I have a bit of a tie to him and the history he and his men made, I suppose. That bit of prejudice doesn't change the fact that this is a great movie, and deserves a DVD release A.S.A.P.

21 of 24 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Merrill's Marauders avgx
Who is the actor in Stock's platoon...? bullit2513
Is this the movie I'm looking for? MarcusCinemus
What were those 'large concrete blocks' used for in the railyard fight? cerberus-335-374543
samuel vaughn wilson debpolk
An alternate ending bullit2513
Discuss Merrill's Marauders (1962) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: