Review: ‘Bataan’

Bataan is a melodramatic re-enactment of the last ditch stand of an American patrol detailed to guard a road in the Philippines following the evacuation of Manila. Picture pulls no punches in displaying the realistically grim warfare.

Bataan is a melodramatic re-enactment of the last ditch stand of an American patrol detailed to guard a road in the Philippines following the evacuation of Manila. Picture pulls no punches in displaying the realistically grim warfare.

There’s a sufficient amount of jungle battle action and a couple of hand-to-hand skirmishes where bayonets are brought into play, but major portion of the extended running time is devoted to dramatic incidents revolving around the hastily-recruited patrol unit and their efforts to stave off the Jap’s advance into the Bataan peninsula so that the main American and Philippine forces could dig in.

Robert Taylor gives a strong performance as the commanding sergeant, but picture focuses attention on screen debut of Robert Walker, who smacks over an arresting portrayal as the sensitive and sympathetic young sailor who attaches himself to the outfit to get a crack at the Japs.

Bataan

Production

M-G-M. Director Tay Garnett; Producer Irving Starr; Screenplay Robert D. Andrews; Camera Sidney Wagner; Editor George White; Music Bronislau Kaper

Crew

(B&W) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1943. Running time: 113 MIN.

With

Robert Taylor George Murphy Thomas Mitchell Lloyd Nolan Robert Walker Desi Arnaz

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