7.3/10
3,085
76 user 19 critic

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 ... 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 »
Edit

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

Feature-film debut (uncredited) of Robert Horton. 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

Rivera: Good thing they invented trains for travelling salesmen.
Friedman: OK, kill me: what's the gag?
Rivera: No gag. But if they didn't have trains, all the travelling salesmen would have to walk.
Friedman: *You're* a travelling salesman; you ain't been taking any trains lately.
Rivera: Whaddaya mean, *I'm* a travelling salesman? I'm a murderer!
Friedman: You're a travelling salesmen. You're selling democracy to the natives.
Rivera: So that's what I am, huh? Whaddaya know. Where'd you get that malarkey, Jake?
Friedman: Out of a book.
Rivera: A book!
Friedman: You're a decadent ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits: It was just a little walk In the warm Italian sun But it was not an easy thing And poets are writing The tale of that fight And songs for children to sing See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Mouth (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Battle Hymn of the Republic
(uncredited)
Music by William Steffe
[incorporated instrumentally to background music during assault on farmhouse]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The 'fog of war' as seen by an WW2 American infantryman
25 May 2005 | by Shaolin_ApuSee all my reviews

Hardly many war films are like this, nothing really happens here but it's still exciting. American infantry platoon lands at Salerno, Italy in 1943 and has orders to capture and hold a farmhouse some miles ahead. The men don't know nothing about what is waiting for them. Will the enemy open fire right at the beach and kill all of them? Will there be mines? Who is their enemy anyway, Germans or Italians? Will they get strafed by enemy aircraft of will 'our boys' control the skies? These are questions that a regular infantryman may ask from himself. They don't know what is waiting for them and they try to guess what the overall situation is. The movie is lots of talking, waiting and walking by the Italian countryside. The soldiers must be alert at all times and there may be false alarms too. Action comes suddenly and is also quickly committed.

This is another of those war movies that can be called 'realistic'. In many post-modern war movie realism is seen as a synonym of lots of blood and dying soldiers yelling 'mommy' and such. I don't call that realism - these men know exactly how to deal with disturbing things that war contains. They ignore things that they cannot emotionally handle and this must also be the way those things were handled in real war. This may well be seen as a dull movie, but it also shows the war as it really was. There is no pathos at all in this movie and that is why many people like it.


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