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A Walk in the Sun (1945)

Approved | | Drama, War | 25 December 1945 (USA)
During WWII, a platoon of American soldiers trudge through the Italian countryside in search of a bridge they have been ordered to blow up, encountering danger and destruction along the way.

Director:

Lewis Milestone

Writers:

Harry Brown (by), Robert Rossen (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 2 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dana Andrews ... Sgt. Bill Tyne
Richard Conte ... Pvt. Rivera
George Tyne ... Pvt. Jake Friedman
John Ireland ... Pfc. Windy Craven
Lloyd Bridges ... Sgt. Ward
Sterling Holloway ... McWilliams
Norman Lloyd ... Pvt. Archimbeau
Herbert Rudley ... Sgt. Eddie Porter
Richard Benedict ... Pvt. Tranella
Huntz Hall ... Pvt. Carraway
James Cardwell ... Sgt. Hoskins
George Offerman Jr. ... Pvt. Tinker
Steve Brodie ... Pvt. Judson
Matt Willis ... Sgt. Pete Halverson
Chris Drake Chris Drake ... Rankin
Edit

Storyline

In the 1943 invasion of Italy, one American platoon lands, digs in, then makes its way inland to blow up a bridge next to a fortified farmhouse, as tension and casualties mount. Unusually realistic picture of war as long quiet stretches of talk, punctuated by sharp, random bursts of violent action whose relevance to the big picture is often unknown to the soldiers. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THEY FOUGHT BEST WHEN IT WAS HOPELESS! (print ad for 1951 reissue "Salerno Beachhead" - all caps)

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Italian

Release Date:

25 December 1945 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Salerno Beachhead See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$800,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Producer Samuel Bronston had to shut down production due to problems with creditors, and the project was taken over by director Lewis Milestone and his Superior Productions. See more »

Goofs

After the platoon has destroyed the armored car, Rivera and two other men are walking along the road in combat formation. Rivera and his ammo bearer, who are talking to each other, are walking at a brisk pace while the man behind them is trudging along with a fatigued gait a bit slower, yet the distance between the men never changes. This was obviously filmed on a soundstage using treadmills. See more »

Quotes

[Windy composes a letter while his landing craft is heading for the beachhead at Salerno under heavy fire]
Windy: Dear Frances, I am writing you this letter relaxing on the deck of a luxury liner. On shore the natives have evidently just spotted us and are getting up a reception - fireworks, music and that sort of stuff. Ha. The musicians in our own band have also struck up a little tune. Ha ha.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The beginning shows an unseen male narrator grabbing a book from a shelf and the cast and crew are set out in the pages of a book. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Mouth (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Bonnie Blue Flag
(uncredited)
Music by Harry McCarthy
[incorporated instrumentally to background music during assault on farmhouse]
See more »

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User Reviews

A landmark, one-of-a-kind war film.
13 September 2003 | by Dragoon173See all my reviews

One of the best war movies ever made, directed by Lewis Milestone (All Quiet on the Western Front), this movie is distinguished by its depiction of war from the soldier's individual point of view. Unlike most war movies, this is infantry combat as seen through the eyes of several members of a platoon as it walks through the Italian countryside in 1943 on its way to seize a German observation post. In all the action sequences, you never see anything that the individual soldier (German, Italian or American) depicted on the screen doesn't see. You only see what is happening around him as he sees it. I've seen them all, and no other director ever approached war filming this way. And I can tell you personally that this is the way it was in combat. The only errors in the entire movie involved grenades: you don't blow bridges with them and you don't pull their pins with your teeth--that's the best way I know of pulling out a tooth w/o a dentist's helping hand. A landmark movie made during the war and only released after the war ended in 1945 because of the final scenes. Matched only by William Wellman's "A Story of GI Joe," this is the best film on infantry combat produced from World War II. Yes, yes, I've seen "Saving Private Ryan." Except for the shock of the first 20 minutes, it's Steven Spielberg's three-star remembrance of his boyhood comic book war stories.


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