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A WWII film set on a Pacific island. Japanese and allied forces occupy different parts of the island. When a group of British soldiers are sent on a mission behind enemy lines, things don't go exactly to plan. This film differs in that some of the 'heros' are very reluctant, but they come good when they are pursued by the Japanese who are determined to prevent them returning to base. Written by
At the time, the largest production to be filmed in the Philippines. See more »
The British Vickers machine gun had an effective range of 810 yds (740m), but could be used for indirect fire at distances up to 4500 yards (4100m). The British 2-inch mortar had a range of 500 yards (457m). Given that the mortars can reach the edge of the jungle, that gives the width of the open field as around that distance (500 yds). The Japanese Arisaka rifle had an effective range of 400m (360 yds), which would put the British troops out of range. However, the Japanese infantry are seen using a Type 99 Light Machine Gun. This had a range of up to 1600 yds (1500m), though its effective range was more likely considerably less. This means that the British soldiers would not be out of range of this weapon when they stood behind their weapons pits, though it is unlikely the Japanese would try to hit them at that distance. See more »
"Too Late the Hero" is an excellent WWII piece whose plot served as the basis for "Aliens" and "Southern Comfort" and is just as good as those other excellent movies: reluctant hero Cliff Robertson joins a motley group of soldiers (here British troops, including loud-mouthed Michael Caine and mad Ian Bannen) led by an incompetent officer, Denholm Elliot, and an experienced sergeant, Percy Herbert, who dies early on. Soon they are being stalked by a very ruthless enemy (Japanese troops led by Ken Takakura, whose role is, refreshingly, not a stereotype - coming across as a rather efficient officer) and shifty Ronald Fraser attempts to save his skin at the expense of the others. As this is Robert Aldrich there is a lot of brutal action, the characters have very few redeeming features but are excellently portrayed by Robertson and the excellent selection of British character actors, and are very anti-military! The climactic scene where the survivors race across open ground under fire from the Japanese is one of the best climaxes ever!
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