You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

The Fighting 69th

Based on the adventures of New York's crack Irish regiment during the First World War, The Fighting 69th is a vigorously melodramatic war picture.

With:
James Cagney Pat O'Brien George Brent Jeffrey Lynn Alan Hale Frank McHugh

Based on the adventures of New York’s crack Irish regiment during the First World War, The Fighting 69th is a vigorously melodramatic war picture.

Story is a factual presentation of the 69th’s war record, from training at Camp Mills through its major engagements at the front, with fictional interpolations for dramatic purposes. It’s a vivid display of soldiering under fire – back of the lines, in the front line trenches and up in No Man’s Land.

With an all-male cast, picture carries no semblance of romantic interest. Not only are wives and sweethearts missing from farewells at Camp Mills, but scripters side-stepped the inclusion of French maids to provide diversion for the American doughboys.

Cagney has a definitely unsympathetic role as the smart-alec recruit from Brooklyn whose mental and physical fibre disintegrates under fire. His eventual regeneration through the efforts of Father Duffy (Pat O’Brien) comes too late to evince much audience sympathy for the character.

Despite the handicaps provided by a despicable role, Cagney scores with a highlight performance. O’Brien is effective as the famous Father Duffy, although the script confines his efforts mainly to straightening out the troublesome Cagney. George Brent essays the role of ‘Wild Bill’ Donovan, head of the outfit; Jeffrey Lynn is excellent in too-brief appearances as the poet, Joyce Kilmer, and Alan Hale is a typical tough top sergeant in the regiment.

The Fighting 69th

Production: Warner. Director William Keighley; Producer Louis F. Edelman; Screenplay Norman Reilly Raine, Fred Niblo Jr, Dean Franklin; Camera Tony Gaudio; Editor Owen Marks; Music Adolphe Deutsch; Art Director Ted Smith

Crew: (B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1940. Running time: 90 MIN.

With: James Cagney Pat O'Brien George Brent Jeffrey Lynn Alan Hale Frank McHugh

More Film

  • Mia FarrowTime 100 Gala, Arrivals, New

    Mia Farrow Didn't Want Dylan Farrow to Talk About Woody Allen Sex Abuse Claims

    Based on the adventures of New York’s crack Irish regiment during the First World War, The Fighting 69th is a vigorously melodramatic war picture. Story is a factual presentation of the 69th’s war record, from training at Camp Mills through its major engagements at the front, with fictional interpolations for dramatic purposes. It’s a vivid […]

  • Melissa McCarthy The Kitchen

    Melissa McCarthy Snorts Ecstasy With Sex Crazed Puppets in 'Happytime Murders'

    Based on the adventures of New York’s crack Irish regiment during the First World War, The Fighting 69th is a vigorously melodramatic war picture. Story is a factual presentation of the 69th’s war record, from training at Camp Mills through its major engagements at the front, with fictional interpolations for dramatic purposes. It’s a vivid […]

  • It movie review

    'It: Chapter 2' Director Andy Muschietti Says 'Bring Your Adult Diapers'

    Based on the adventures of New York’s crack Irish regiment during the First World War, The Fighting 69th is a vigorously melodramatic war picture. Story is a factual presentation of the 69th’s war record, from training at Camp Mills through its major engagements at the front, with fictional interpolations for dramatic purposes. It’s a vivid […]

  • Deadpool 2 Ocean's 8

    Poll: Which Summer Tentpole Are You Most Excited to See?

    Based on the adventures of New York’s crack Irish regiment during the First World War, The Fighting 69th is a vigorously melodramatic war picture. Story is a factual presentation of the 69th’s war record, from training at Camp Mills through its major engagements at the front, with fictional interpolations for dramatic purposes. It’s a vivid […]

  • Matthew Rhys, Benedict Cumberbatch, Andy Serkis,

    Can 'Mowgli' Sell MovieGoers on a Darker 'Jungle Book'?

    Based on the adventures of New York’s crack Irish regiment during the First World War, The Fighting 69th is a vigorously melodramatic war picture. Story is a factual presentation of the 69th’s war record, from training at Camp Mills through its major engagements at the front, with fictional interpolations for dramatic purposes. It’s a vivid […]

  • Fantastic Beasts

    Eddie Redmayne Faces the Dark Arts in 'Fantastic Beasts' Sequel Footage

    Based on the adventures of New York’s crack Irish regiment during the First World War, The Fighting 69th is a vigorously melodramatic war picture. Story is a factual presentation of the 69th’s war record, from training at Camp Mills through its major engagements at the front, with fictional interpolations for dramatic purposes. It’s a vivid […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content