Cut off by the Japanese advance into Burma, Captain Langford (Stanley Baker) and his exhausted British troops take over an enemy-held jungle village. Despite the protests of an elderly padre ('Guy Rolfe (I)') and of war correspondent Max Anderson (Leo McKern), Langford orders Sergeant McKenzie (Gordon Jackson) to shoot two innocent villagers, thereby "persuading" a Japanese informer to surrender vital information. When the Japanese recapture the village, their commander uses Langford's own desperate war-born tactics in a similar effort to extract information from the British.Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
There is no 'The End' at the end of the film. The camera merely pans away from a memorial which reads 'WHEN YOU GO HOME TELL THEM OF US AND SAY- FOR THEIR TOMORROW WE GAVE OUR TODAY'; and silence, but with just birds singing. See more »
This 1959 black and white WWII movie is one of the most realistic depictions of jungle warfare I have ever seen. Wonderfully acted by all concerned, and the script strikes a clever balance between duty and anti-war opinions. It is about a lost group of soldiers from the "forgotten army" in Burma, trying to reach their own lines, and whilst doing so take over a Japanese held village.
The tension is almost unbearable, and the movie never relies on music to enhance that tension, for there is no music in it from start to finish. (And to be truthful in this movie it's not missed.) It's impossible to pick out a star performer. They all are, but I suppose the two that really stand out are Stanley Baker as the commanding officer and Leo McKern as the cynical war-correspondent attached to the group.
I have yet to see this movie screened on TV (although someone may set me right if it has), and considering the pap that is aired, I can't think of one reason why it hasn't. It's a terrific film and if you enjoy realistic gritty war movies, then this is the one for you.
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