With her infant daughter Margaret Rose in tow, Georgette Thomas pulls up stakes from Tyler, Texas to head to Columbus, Texas to be reunited with her husband, Henry Thomas, who has just been... See full summary »
World War II drama where the action centers around a single maneuver by a squad of GIs in retaliation against the force of the German Siegfried line. Reese joins a group of weary GIs unexpectedly ordered back into the line when on their way to a rest area. While most of the men withdraw from their positions facing a German pillbox at the far side of a mine-field, half a dozen men are left to protect a wide front. By various ruses, they manage to convince the Germans that a large force is still holding the position. Then Reese leads two of the men in an unauthorized and unsuccessful attack on the pillbox, in which the other two are killed; and when the main platoon returns, he is threatened with court-martial. Rather that face the disgrace, and in an attempt to show he was right, he makes a one-man attack on the pillbox.Written by
Steve McQueen is the reason to watch this movie. As some of these recent Docs on McQueen point out, he researched his moves, how to plausibly use his hardware and props and look very cool doing it. Turning his part into something he can omit unnecessary duologue from while he does physical stuff. His Reese is a hardcore guy with no room for nonsense or humor. When the Nick Adams character, a puppy dog native trying to adopt the unit as an ersatz GI, tries to ingratiate himself with Reese, Reese says "If I see you at the front, I'll Kill you myself." With that 1000 mile stare very few tough guys really master. And a goofy detail that I associate with this movie and the McQueen body/instrument. McQueen scrambles over to another foxhole and drops his weight into a perfect glide on his knees coming down the dirt bank. A hiss of contact that is pure grace, pure athleticism. Dumb detail but exactly the kind of stuff you're absorbing while you watch McQueen. I wish Don Siegel could have worked with McQueen on other projects. They both had a larger than life style that still kept it real.
14 of 19 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this