6.6/10
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31 user 11 critic

The Purple Plain (1954)

In WW2 Burma, a Canadian bomber pilot becomes reckless after losing his bride in a Luftwaffe air-raid.

Director:

Robert Parrish

Writers:

H.E. Bates (novel), Eric Ambler (screenplay)
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Nominated for 4 BAFTA Film Awards. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Gregory Peck ... Squadron Leader Bill Forrester
Win Min Than ... Anna
Brenda de Banzie Brenda de Banzie ... Miss McNab (as Brenda De Banzie)
Bernard Lee ... Dr. Harris
Maurice Denham Maurice Denham ... Blore
Lyndon Brook ... Carrington
Anthony Bushell ... Group Captain Aldridge
Josephine Griffin ... Mrs. Bill Forrester
Ram Gopal Ram Gopal ... Mr. Phang
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Storyline

After losing his bride in a Luftwaffe air raid, bomber pilot Forrester becomes a solitary killing machine, who doesn't care whether he dies. The reckless Canadian pilot is both admired and feared by the rest of his squadron in World War II Burma. The squadron physician is assigned to determine the embittered Bill Forrester's fitness for duty. To break through the nightmare-haunted man's wall of silence, the physician drives Forrester to visit an outpost of English-speaking refugees, which includes an alluring young Burmese woman. Written by David Stevens

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

ADVENTURE! ...With the sky as its canopy and Burma's "Purple Hell" as its arena! See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Drama | War | Action

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 November 1954 (Finland) See more »

Also Known As:

La flamme pourpre See more »

Filming Locations:

Elephant Pass, Sri Lanka See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,300,000, 31 December 1954
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Colour by) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Just before the crash Peck's navigator references "Where the dawn comes up like thunder". This is a quote from Mandalay by Rudyard Kipling. See more »

Goofs

When Peck's co-pilot looks out at the starboard engine, it is leaking some kind of fluid, but that fluid is running down the side of the engine. It's not showing any sign of what would have to be, at least a 200 mph wind, passing over the nacelle. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Harris: They can't buy food. They came here stripped of everything. All the way from Rangoon. Can you imagine what it must have been like? Hundreds of miles. I don't know how any of them got through alive.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: BURMA 1945 See more »

Soundtracks

Jesus Christ is risen today
(uncredited)
Traditional lyrics (from Bohemia)
Music by Robert Williams
Sung when Forrester is asked his favourite Easter hymn
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Peck at his most enigmatic
4 September 2006 | by mwarburtonSee all my reviews

A pot-boiler of a Film that is intelligently crafted by Director Robert Parrish. To some it may seem intolerably slow & lacking pace, but to others like myself the Film does something that nearly all Films in the Fifties and indeed many now do not even attempt to achieve, and that is take the time to investigate the main characters in depth and in detail. This is done not via long tracts of dialogue, but via the un-said. In particular Peck and the astonishingly beautiful and talented Win Man Than as 'Anna' develop their relationship in the Film in the subtlest and most delicate of manners. I can find no further information on Win Man Tan, but her performance in this period piece, is one part enchanting, one part mesmerising. We understand fully how Peck's psychiatric problems eventually dissolve as hie begins to find perspective courtesy of love for 'Anna'. This Film is not staggering nor the best piece of Cinema you will ever see, but it is superbly acted, wonderfully cast, sparingly written, adroitly directed, and deserves to be watched by anyone who has a love of Cinema. Recommended, because what we see at our Cinemas today has MUCH to learn from Movie making such as this.


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