7.4/10
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44 user 21 critic

To Hell and Back (1955)

Approved | | Action, Biography, Drama | 18 October 1955 (Japan)
The true WWII story of Audie Murphy, the most decorated soldier in U.S. history. Based on the autobiography of Audie Murphy who stars as himself in the film.

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(written for the screen by), (autobiography "To Hell And Back")
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Johnson
...
Brandon
...
...
...
Valentino
...
Lt. Lee
Richard Castle ...
Kovak
...
Capt. Marks
...
Col. Howe
Art Aragon ...
Sanchez
Felix Noriego ...
Swope
...
Thompson
...
Saunders
...
Maria
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Storyline

True-life account of the military career of Audie Murphy, the most decorated soldier in WWII. Native of Texas, he was placed in charge of his many younger siblings on the death of his mother and decided to join the military at the age of 18 to provide for them. His many acts of bravery and heroism during the US military advance through Italy, France and into Germany earn him increasing rank and responsibility as well as the respect of his comrades in arms. Eventually he receives two dozen of the highest medals the US and France can bestow, culminating in the awarding of the Congressional Medal of Honor. Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Exciting True-Life Story Of America's Most Decorated Hero


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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| |

Release Date:

18 October 1955 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

L'enfer des hommes  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(35 mm optical prints) (Western Electric Recording)| (35 mm magnetic prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Audie Murphy originally declined the opportunity to portray himself in the movie, not wanting people to think that he was attempting to cash in on his role as a war hero. Murphy initially suggested his friend Tony Curtis to play him. They had worked together on three westerns--Sierra (1950), Kansas Raiders (1950) and The Cimarron Kid (1952). See more »

Goofs

When the 3rd Division is in North Africa, it is 1942-43. All of the soldiers are carrying M-1945 field packs, cartridge belts, canteen covers and E-tool carriers. The correct field gear would be the M-1928 gear. It is similar in appearance to the M-1910 field gear in that it is a long narrow pack in a more mustard green color vs. dark olive green. See more »

Quotes

Kerrigan: [Observing the starving Italian orphans picking through garbagr cans] They picked a great time to be born, didn't they?
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Connections

Featured in The Universal Story (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

Columbia, the Gem of the Ocean
(uncredited)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A Wasted Opportunity
26 October 2006 | by See all my reviews

Audie Murphy, the greatest hero of World War II, was always a seriously underrated actor, and he had a great screen presence. This movie was a chance to make film history by featuring Murphy in his own exciting story, something that's never been done before or since. Well, Universal blew it! Not by their standards, of course, they made a lot of money. But as time goes on, this movie hasn't been well regarded, and it falls flat on contemporary viewers. Future generations will generally dismiss it.

The battle scenes play like a Disney version of the war, so sanitized the main role might have been played by Hayley Mills. Murphy adopts this curiously detached and semi- bored manner throughout the story, looking uneasy in his own uniform. You might have thought this film would have plenty of technical advisors, including Murphy himself, but everything---the gear, the scenery---looks and feels wrong. The Italian campaign, it seems, was fought in a sunny backlot, against fake Germans wearing fake uniforms with fake weapons.

Most of the other actors fit blandly into their goofy patterned innocent/naive American farmboy roles, and it wears thin after a while. Halfway through, I got the feeling that this could have been a great war classic if it had been aimed a little higher than the junior ROTC crowd. A more bitter and savage tone, tempered with American optimism, the kind of attitude that I understand Mr. Murphy actually had later in life, would have worked.

Even though I was disappointed, I still recommend watching this film because of my admiration for Audie Murphy, and to observe a particular attitude about war that was common in 1950s America. In some ways, after the crusade in Europe, that attitude was justified.


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