14 user 11 critic

Retreat, Hell! (1952)

Approved | | Drama , War | 6 October 1952 (Sweden)
The saga of a battalion of U.S. Marines during the Korean War, starting with their training, landing at Inchon in 1950, advance into North Korea and their subsequent retreat back to the 38th parallel.


Joseph H. Lewis


Milton Sperling (screenplay), Ted Sherdeman (screenplay) | 1 more credit »

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Credited cast:
Frank Lovejoy ... Lt. Col. Steve L. Corbett
Richard Carlson ... Capt. Paul Hansen
Anita Louise ... Ruth Hansen
Russ Tamblyn ... Jimmy W. McDermid (as Rusty Tamblyn)
Nedrick Young ... Sgt. Novak (as Ned Young)
Lamont Johnson Lamont Johnson ... Capt. 'Tink' O'Grady
Robert Ellis ... Shorty Devine
Paul Smith ... Andy Smith
Peter Ortiz Peter Ortiz ... Maj. Knox
Dorothy Patrick ... Eve O'Grady
Morton C. Thompson Morton C. Thompson ... Capt. Kyser
Joseph Keane Joseph Keane ... Lt. Ortiz
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Rudy Albachten Rudy Albachten ... Man on Supply Truck


During the Korean War, a U.S. Marine battalion must fight its way out of a frozen mountain pass despite diminishing supplies, freezing temperatures and constant attacks by overwhelming numbers of Chinese soldiers. Written by frankfob2@yahoo.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


"Retreat, hell"...The Fighting Challenge That Inspired Warner Bros.' Great Story of Friendship Under Fire! See more »


Drama | War


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »





English | Korean

Release Date:

6 October 1952 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

We Came Out Fighting See more »

Filming Locations:

Oceanside, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

United States Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Just before the movie premiered in San Antonio, Texas, in 1952, local radio stations decided the film's title was tasteless and offensive. So instead, advertisements informed listeners that a new war film, "Retreat, Heck!" would be opening soon. See more »


Right after the Marines stop the huge communist attack near the end of the movie, Captain Hansen gets out of his foxhole to check on his men. Nearby are dozens of fallen enemy troops. If any of these soldiers were just wounded or pretending to be dead, they could easily have shot Hansen, since he was fully exposed to them. A real Marine officer would never have been this careless. See more »


Lt. Col. Steve L. Corbett: Retreat hell! We're not retreating, we're just advancing in a different direction.
See more »

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User Reviews

A fighting retreat is not a defeat
11 November 2006 | by captainamerica440See all my reviews

War is hell. This grim movie bears that out. At least this black and white movie is consistent from start to finish as it portrays United States Marines landing and later retreating in the frozen hell of Korea. The movie's redeeming qualities are its educational aspects and the actual combat footage. Story, dialog, casting, acting and special effects are all about average. I thought the characterization was better than average at times, as it showed Marines struggling with loss, despair, fear, hope, joy and even expressing compassion. Korea has been termed the forgotten war. That is unfortunate as it was and still is very relevant, even to this day. Witness the recent demonstration of nuclear power by North Korea and the consternation it has generated. The younger generation should be aware of our nations history and this movie can be a fun and enlightening way to do so. They might wonder what Chinese soldiers are doing there. At one point our movie's characters are almost saying a famous line from a later movie--"Who are these guys?" Overall, Retreat, Hell! is a respectable war movie.

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