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Manuel Padilla Jr.
WW-II 1941: Shortly after Pearl Harbor the Japanese attack the Philippine islands. A group of Polo playing soldiers and their families are surprised far off in the countryside. Lt. Bailey leads them back to Manila, but the streets are jammed with fugitives. On the trip Bailey's fiancée Alex talks with a 22 years old shy soldier. He tells her of his fears to die and admits that he's never been with a woman. Only once before he dies, he'd like to have sex. Written by
Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>
John Derek has never made a good movie in his life. He's been IN some good ones, but he's never MADE a good one, and there's no better example of his almost complete lack of talent as a filmmaker than this. He takes a potentially interesting story--the guerrilla war waged against the Japanese after their takeover of the Philippines in World War II--and for some reason turns it into a game of who's going to nail Ursula Andress before the Japanese kill everybody. Derek apparently thought that the sight of Andress, his wife (or girlfriend, or whatever she was) at that time, in various stages of undress was enough to draw people into the theaters (it wasn't). Because of that, he obviously paid no attention whatsoever to minor things like having a coherent script, directing the other actors, maintaining a semblance of continuity--trivial matters like that. The only saving grace (professionally, that is) is Richard Jaeckel's performance as a soldier eventually driven insane by the fighting. Jaeckel was always one of the most watchable actors around; he had that cockiness and explosive quality that Cagney had, and no matter how lousy the movie was (like this one), he always pulled it up a couple of notches. Unfortunately, he wouldn't have been able to pull this thing up with a crane. Its infuriating pretentiousness is its main undoing. The dialogue is so Ed Woods-ian in its rambling, nonsensical "what-the-HELL-are-they-talking-about?" absurdity that you finally find yourself wishing that the Japanese would come in, whack everybody and put the cast--and the audience--out of their misery. An absolutely painful experience that makes you wonder, "How in God's name did he get anyone to put up the money to make this thing?" Skip it.
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