I rather like They Were Expendable. It's a wonderful blend of a number of my movie passions. It's a WWII movie, and a very good one at that. John Ford directs, John Wayne co-stars and Ward Bond is in the cast --- your basic Ford/Wayne movie. The ending is superb, brings a few tears to my eyes every time I see it. I do so enjoy a movie that can stir my emotions --- this movie does it.
And Bob's in it, giving one of his best performances. In later years, when asked what performances he was proudest of, he mentions Night Must Fall, Here Comes Mr. Jordan, and The Earl of Chicago ... never this movie. I really do not understand that. Perhaps he felt there was "less" acting involved since he was basically portraying the actual Bob from his Pacific tour of duty? As good a guess as any, I guess!
Anyway, back to my passions: men in uniform, Bob in uniform, Bob in white. Bob in a white uniform ... yikes! I recently bought a copy of the book, the 1945 motion picture edition of TWE, with the chance that it would contain a copy of the bar scene with the officers wearing their dress whites. It did!! Made my day. Now, if I could find an original photo still of the same scene, as in one that's a tad clearer then the one below ... would I sell the farm?? (Oh, YES!)
This isn’t your father’s Ganja & Hess
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