- Bataan (film)
name = Bataan
caption = Original Promotional Poster
writer = Robert Hardy Andrews
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer; United States Office of War Information
starring = Robert Taylor
Lloyd Nolan| released = flagicon|United States 3 June, 1943flagicon|Sweden 24 April, 1944flagicon|Finland 4 March, 1945
runtime = 114 min.
language = English, Spanish,
Bronislau Kaper, Eric Zeisl
amg_id = 1:4271
imdb_id = 0035664
editing = George White|
"Bataan" (1943) is a
war filmabout the defense of the Bataan Peninsulaat the start of World War II. It was made by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, directed by Tay Garnettand produced by Irving Starr, with Dore Scharyas executive producer. It starred Robert Taylor, Lloyd Nolan, Thomas Mitchell and Robert Walker.
Historical setting of the film
Battle of Bataanfollowed the Japanese December, 1941 invasion of the Philippines and lasted from January 1 to April 9, 1942. In this action, the unified United States and Philippine forces retreated from Manila onto the nearby, mountainous Bataan peninsula for a desperate last stand. There was hope that a relief would arrive, but none could be mustered. After 3 months of desperate fighting, the starving and malaria-ridden forces surrendered and were led on the infamous Bataan Death March.
The US Army is conducting a fighting retreat. A high bridge spans a ravine on the Bataan peninsula. After the army and some civilians cross, a group of thirteen hastily-assembled volunteers from different units is assigned to blow it up and delay Japanese rebuilding efforts as long as possible. The soldiers are a mixed lot, including a Mexican-American California National Guardsman in the
Tank Corps( Desi Arnaz), a black engineer demolitionsexpert (Kenneth Spencer), a conscientious objectorin the Medical Corps( Phillip Terry), an engineer ( Barry Nelson), a Philippine Scout (J. Alex Havier), a cook ( Tom Dugan), and a naive young sailor ( Robert Walker). Sergeant Bill Dane (Robert Taylor) and Corporal Jake Feingold ( Thomas Mitchell) are regular infantry, while Corporal Barney Todd ( Lloyd Nolan) is a signalman.
They dig in on a hillside and blow up the bridge, but their commander, cavalry Captain Henry Lassiter (
Lee Bowman), is killed by a sniper, leaving Dane in charge. One by one, the defenders are killed, with one succumbing to malaria.
Army Air Corps pilot
LieutenantSteve Bentley (played by future Senator George Murphy) and his Filipino mechanic, Corporal Juan Katigbak (Roque Espiritu), work frantically to repair an airplane. They succeed, but Bentley is mortally wounded. He has them load explosives aboard, takes off and deliberately crashes his plane into the bridge's foundation.
The last few soldiers repel a massive frontal assault. Two more are killed by Japanese soldiers who feign death. Finally, the last survivor, Sergeant Dane, stoically digs his own marked grave beside those of his fallen comrades, waits in it, and fires at the onrushing enemy as the final credits roll.
The presence of a racially integrated fighting force prevented the film's showing in the United States' South.
Back to Bataan", a 1945 RKOfilm directed by Edward Dmytrykand starring John Waynewhich returns to the same setting and theme.
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Look at other dictionaries:
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