7.3/10
6,898
66 user 27 critic

Hell in the Pacific (1968)

During World War II, an American pilot and a marooned Japanese navy captain are deserted on a small uninhabited island in the Pacific Ocean. There, they must cease their hostility and cooperate if they want to survive, but will they?

Director:

John Boorman

Writers:

Alexander Jacobs (screenplay), Eric Bercovici (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Lee Marvin ... American Pilot
Toshirô Mifune ... Captain Tsuruhiko Kuroda (as Toshiro Mifune)
Edit

Storyline

During World War II, a shot-down American pilot and a marooned Japanese navy captain find themselves stranded on the same small uninhabited island in the Pacific Ocean. Following war logic, each time the crafty Japanese devises something useful, he guards it to deny its use to the Yank, who then steals it, its proceeds or the idea and/or ruins it. Yet each gets his chance to kill and/or capture the other, but neither pushes this to the end. After a while of this pointless pestering, they end up joining forces to build and man a raft... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

They hunted each other as enemies...they tormented each other as savages...they faced each other as men! See more »

Genres:

Adventure | War

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Japanese

Release Date:

18 December 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Infierno en el Pacífico See more »

Filming Locations:

Airai, Babelthuap, Palau See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$4,150,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,330,000, 31 December 1968

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,230,000, 31 December 1968
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (Westrex Recording System) (35 mm mag-optical prints)| 70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

After the producers changed the original ending without consulting him, director John Boorman vowed to always retain creative control of his projects from then on. See more »

Quotes

American Pilot: Oh, for a second I thought you were a Jap.
See more »

Alternate Versions

American version featured an alternative ending where the two get drunk and walk off in separate directions arguing at each other; in the British version they start yelling and a bomb from the sky falls and blows everything apart. See more »

Connections

Featured in Man vs. Man (2017) See more »

Soundtracks

Down in the Cane Brake
(uncredited)
Traditional
Sung by Lee Marvin
See more »

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User Reviews

Excellent movie, hilarious yet tragic
20 March 2001 | by DJ_RamjetSee all my reviews

Was there a better hard man in the 70's then Lee Marvin ? I don't think so. Team him up with Toshiro Mifune (yojimbio, Seven Samurai), gorgeous scenery (Paulau islands) under the light hand of John Borman (Deliverance) and watch as a simple story grows and develops into a visual feast. There is no lead-in to the film, all we see is a lone Japanese soldier on a tropical island spotting a life raft and realising he is suddenly not alone, and worse, his company is an enemy soldier. The initial confrontations are tension filled as the two chase each other around and around their new home in a battle of wits and cunning. Eventually the inevitable happens and they are forced to start living together. Rather than a Disneyish style 'lets all learn to live together because we are all really the same under the skin' co-operation, the two have as little to do with each other as possible, unless arguing about possession of driftwood (in a scene that left me in tears of laughter). Eventually they do co-operate through necessity to leave the island and develop a bond of friendship through adversity, only to have this challenged when exposed to the realities of the world outside their desert island refuge. A bitter but unavoidable ending reminds us of the insanities of war. I loved this film because it was totally gripping in a way few movies are, I genuinely cared about the characters. It was in some ways like watching 'survivor' in the way the relationship changed-only in reverse- so naturally did it happen on screen. Bormans direction was great, more of a fly on the wall perspective that made the story all the more involving. This movie deserves to be seen.


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