Dark tale of one man's determination to survive his tour of duty. Separated from his new wife after only eight days of marriage, private Doll suddenly decides that he will no longer blindly follow the orders of his superiors, following his own mind instead. What follows are a series of poorly planned attacks, in which Doll saves the day, time after time; eventually leading to the taking of the Elephant in the battle of Guadalcanal during World War II. Sgt. Welsh, Doll's immediate line officer grows an affinity for Doll, helping him through his first Kill, but never quite allowing himself to admit his admiration for the young soldier. The final scene of the movie brings home the true horror of war and the meaninglessness of it all. Written by
The film's title comes from James Jones's novel and, in turn, from an old saying. In the movie, Captain Stone, played by Ray Daley, says, "I remember an old Midwest saying, 'There's only a thin red line between the sane and the mad.' " See more »
Gripping story of Guadalcanal and of the men who fought
I felt the new version to be too esoteric, too clean and that it did not capture the terrible conditions on that island as described in Mr. Jones' Book. In this version the images of the troops fighting their way through swamps in the pouring tropical rain to face hidden enemy emplacements was very real. Although the acting was fairly ordinary the final scenes in the caves were gripping. The true horror of war and it's effects on ordinary men were heartfelt and real. I recommend this movie to those who saw the 1998 version. The comparison is well worth it.
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