Battle Cry (1955) Movie Script

They call me Mac.
The name's not important.
It's January 1942.
Marine outposts around the world
have fallen to the Japanese.
Our ranks are empty and ill-equipped.
We need help.
From every part of the country,
kids are answering our call.
This is Baltimore, Maryland.
Detail, halt!
Left face!
You men have got a few minutes
to see your folks. Fall out!
Ma and Pa's over here.
Hey, lady, my brother's a Marine.
If your father had listened to me,
you wouldn't be going to war at 19.
- Mom, let's not go over that again.
- I'm proud of you, son.
Hi, Danny. I'm sorry I'm late.
- Scared?
- A little.
Look, suppose I'm gone a year or two years.
Suppose you want to change your mind.
Well, we'd both be awfully hurt then.
I won't change my mind.
I just want to go on being your girl.
I guess this kind of makes us engaged, huh?
All right, Section 5, all aboard!
Section 5!
Let's go, on the double, come on!
- Good luck, son.
- All right, all aboard, let's go.
If they don't treat you right, you come right back.
How long can we go on like this,
sneaking around, meeting in cheap joints?
- You'd get to hate me.
- I could never hate you.
But your old man hates me. I won't be
able to get a decent job in this lousy town.
Sue, can't you see I'd rot here?
I couldn't take it!
Ski, what's gonna happen
if you can't get me to California?
Baby, I'll save every nickel, and I'll send for you.
We'll be away from Philly
and your old man.
- All aboard!
- Oh, honey!
All right, men. Get aboard.
Come on now, hurry up!
- I've got to go, baby.
- Get aboard!
Scenes like this are played all over the land...
... as boys from the cities and from
the farms rush to fill our ranks.
All trains head west.
Destination, San Diego.
This bunch looks like any other group we're getting.
Politics and wars make strange bedfellows.
In almost every car,
you'll find a Texan with a guitar...
... an all-American boy...
... the farmer...
... the pride of the Navajos.
Then there's the slum kid...
... the bookworm...
... the lumberjack.
And there's one in every outfit.
And you'll usually find a troublemaker.
- Put it back. You didn't make your point.
- What do you mean?
- You accusing me of something dishonest?
- Put it back.
I was only kidding.
Let's be buddies.
- Spanish Joe's a troublemaker.
- Yeah.
He'll learn. The hard way.
- I wish we were in San Diego already.
- We'll be there soon enough.
You're a couple of nice guys.
I hope we stick together.
Be okay.
- Got a gal, Marion?
- No.
How about you, Andy?
Do I got a gal?
I got hundreds of them.
Every broad in the north woods knows old Andy.
Not me. I got one, that's all I need.
This guy's nuts.
San Diego, the end of the line.
As they arrive at boot camp,
the door to their past shuts behind them.
Get off that truck. Get off.
Get back in there!
Get going.
All right, you guys,
follow that white line over there.
- My head feels like a prickly pear!
- I've been scalped!
Gonna let my eyebrows grow out
and throw them back!
Move it in, you guys!
Come on! Move out!
Over there, you skinheads!
The rest of you get in there
and get deloused.
All right, you people.
My name is Sergeant Beller.
You guys are going to hate the day
you met me.
As far as I'm concerned,
you are not human beings anymore.
And don't get the idea you're Marines!
You're recruits! Meatheads!
The lowest form of animal
in this here universe.
You will refer to me as "sir."
All right.
You'll eat no candy,
read no papers, hear no radios...
...and speak only when spoken to.
You will salute everything moving
above the rank of private.
- What's your name, son?
- I.Q. Jones.
"My name is Private Jones, I.Q., sir!"
My name is Private I.Q. Jones, sir.
Your Honor.
- Where are you from, meathead?
- Cotton Plant, sir.
- Cotton Plant, what?
- Arkansas.
It ain't no more than a wide spot in a thin road...
Shut up!
Who said you could talk?
- You chewing gum, son?
- Yes, sir.
Swallow it.
All right, you people, from now on,
it's gonna be double-time.
No more walking.
All right, you're gonna get fed now.
Personally, I think it's a waste of government money.
Right face!
Forward march!
After the cordial welcome to the Corps...
... comes the job of turning boys into men.
About face!
Face left.
Ready, front!
Let's get that hat down!
Cut down that belt!
Pull up your pants, son!
- You want that button?
- Yes, sir.
- Did you shave this morning?
- I shaved twice, sir.
You didn't slip up and put a blade
in the razor, did you?
A blade, sir? No, sir.
Us full-blooded Indians never shave.
The Marine Corps says you gotta shave
every morning whether you need it or not!
The Indian love call.
We've got a wise guy in our midst.
You guys must need some exercise.
All right. Right face!
Forward, hut!
Double-time, hut!
Lift them up! Hut!
Come on, step it up, you guys. Move!
So it goes from sunup to sundown.
Days turn into weeks.
They learn that the price
of the green uniform comes high.
Move! Get the lead out, you meatheads!
Then suddenly, you're beginning to learn the
lesson the instructor has been pounding in.
There's no place for stragglers
in the Marine Corps.
Left oblique! Huh!
File out, file out.
Right oblique! Huh!
To the rear. Huh!
And you're sure that yours
is the best outfit in boot camp.
Ten weeks have passed,
and tomorrow we finish boot camp.
We hope we can stick together
and go to radio school from here.
Man, this living in tents
behind closed gates is tough on me.
I can't even remember what a woman looks like.
It's tougher on me.
I can remember.
I'm gonna kill that Beller, I'm gonna
rip him apart with my bare hands.
- Tell us your side of the story.
- They got a picture tonight about Marines.
And I hate pictures about Marines.
I thought it was a cowboys-and-lndians picture.
I know that picture, cousin.
This here Marine private gets a set of dress blues...
Yeah, The Real Marine.
Isn't that the one where the broad
flips her lid for the private?
That's it.
He's a Marine because his daddy was a Marine.
He hates the Corps, but learns to love it just like we do.
Ends up saving the life of his drill instructor.
- What a dumb jerk.
- Know what that stupid Beller says to me?
He says, "Private Jones, the Marine Corps
says you all got to be entertained.
It's good for your morale.
All right, you dumb Yankees,
ain't you ever gonna learn?
Jones, throw out that chest!
Jones, ain't you got no chest?
All right, you dumb Yankees!
Can't you understand
American when it's spoke?
Mr. Christian, 10 lashes for them Yankees!
Lick the deck! Lick the..."
Don't bother me right now, boy.
"I'll make you boys
feel sorry for the day..."
Gentlemen, don your buckets.
All right, what are you people?
We're skinheads.
- What?
- Skinheads!
And stupid Yankees too!
And who do you love?
We love our Sergeant Beller!
Yes, sir!
- There's that Indian love call again.
- It's the chow, sarge.
In all my 10 years in the Marine Corps,
this is the first time I've been stumped.
I still don't know who the bird is.
Well, I give up.
All right, take them off.
At ease.
I just came over to tell you skinheads...
...that they're sending
a bunch of you out... radio school.
All right, one more thing.
You're gyrenes now.
And when you pass in review tomorrow...
...and do an eyes right...
...let me hear them eyeballs click.
Just call me Jim.
This was the day.
To a man, their hearts pound,
nearly bursting with pride.
They had paid in sweat, humiliation and
a few tears for the name they now carried.
They were Marines now, and they would be
till the day they died.
This is me, Mac, with the six chevrons.
I'm communicator for this outfit.
Major Wellman, the executive officer.
He gave up an ulcer job in civilian life
for another ulcer job in the Marine Corps.
Little Ziltch, a new kid, the commander's orderly.
And this is Major Sam Huxley, known
throughout the Corps as High Pockets.
He's now in command of the 2nd Battalion.
I've served with Huxley
off and on for years.
If there's one man who can build
a fighting battalion, you're looking at him.
- Mac.
- Yes, sir.
- Take charge. Get them squared away.
- Yes, sir.
Bob, get them bedded down.
Left face!
Arms, huh!
Forward, huh!
Rest easy. The smoking lamp's lit.
I called you men together because
I know we're all thinking the same thing.
These new boys we're getting...
...they may look like Marines
and talk like Marines...
...but we know the truth.
In other words, we've got problems.
We've also got a war on our hands.
Now, we all have buddies on wait
in the Philippines and Shanghai.
It's gonna be a long road back.
And we can't get back without them.
You know I'm going to train them... that every private in this battalion
can take command if he has to.
The only way I can do that
is with your help.
Thank you. That will be all.
The man said he wanted communicators,
and I said he'd have them.
Every minute they weren't in the field,
I had them at the practice table.
Inside three weeks, they could read code
in their sleep. And probably did.
Come on, snap out of it.
What, you got the blues?
This place gives me the creeps on Sunday.
Forget about it, Danny.
Monkey with a broad, you wind up
on the short end of the stick.
- None of them are worth it.
- Save the advice, chaplain.
Thought I'd give the benefit of my experience.
I want to be there when you fall
for some nice girl.
A broad ain't been made yet
that'll make old Andy fall.
- Let's go ashore and get out of this hole.
- Good idea.
We're going on liberty.
How about coming along?
I gotta finish ironing these shirts.
Ski, they've got a town out here
full of beautiful tomatoes.
You ain't been on liberty since we've been in the Corps.
I got a chance to pick up extra bucks pressing.
I've gotta save my dough to get Susan out here.
If it's a dame you want out here,
I'll lend you the dough.
Thanks anyway, but I don't want no charity.
It's your life.
Eat your heart out, feather merchant,
eat your heart out.
I'll murder Mac and Huxley.
They got no respect for communicators.
That lousy Mac had me shoveling garbage again today.
Me! I'm writing my congressman.
Me and the Corps have split the blanket.
That's Navajo for finished, done.
That's right. Huxley's trying to kill us.
Ten straight 15-mile hikes.
You know what they call this outfit?
"Huxley's Harlots."
And if we ain't hiking, we're getting
dit-happy on that signal key.
Maybe I should learn Mac how to use smoke signals.
What's Crazy Horse beefing about?
He says he's a son of a Indian chief,
and he wants to go back to the reservation.
Tell that man there'll be
no swearing here on Sunday.
I wonder who's stuck
with guard duty tonight.
I think I see your name up there.
Put it back, Joseph.
I was just going to borrow it.
The last time you borrowed something,
I never saw it again.
Hey, you accusing me
of something dishonest?
Just put it back, please.
You think you're so smart
because you read all the time.
I ain't liked you since boot camp.
I've got a notion to loosen you
from a few teeth...
...Sister Mary.
Now, wait a minute.
I was only fooling with you.
What'd you go and do that for?
I saw what happened to one fellow
who tried to shake your hand.
That was a lucky punch.
You know that, huh?
You're the only guy alive
who can do that to old Spanish Joe...
...and live to tell about it.
What you reading?
You mean they wrote a whole big book
about Mickey Mouse's dog?
You know something?
I like you, Mary.
You stick with me
and I'll get you over the rough spots.
What you think of old Spanish Joe now?
I think you're
the most obnoxious person I ever met.
What's that, obnoxious?
You stink.
That's because I was eating garlic.
Hey, kid, you got guts.
You and me's going to be buddy-buddy.
Thanks, Mac.
Don't do that with my hat!
What's the matter with you?
Miss, would you please pick it up for me?
All right. What'll you have?
Give me a cheeseburger
and a cup of coffee.
And how about a piece
of that apple pie too?
What's yours?
I think I'll have something different.
My name's Andy.
What time you getting off duty?
I have just two words for you.
Remind me to tell you what they are later.
Why not now?
Later's always better.
- What are you doing?
- Looking for Ski.
- He cracked up.
- What happened?
- He got a letter and tore the barracks apart.
- He went crazy and threw his bed at me.
He drew all the money he had stashed away,
over $400, and headed into San Diego.
Mac's looking for him.
He told us to wait here.
Something must've gone wrong
with his girl, Susan.
- We found him. Come on.
- Let's go.
Here's a couple of bucks.
I'll see you later.
Is he still in there?
That's the kind of joint this is.
If he ain't in the bar, he's upstairs.
We don't want no trouble.
But, just in case, get your belts ready.
Let's go, sailors.
Can I help you fellows?
We're looking for a buddy of ours, a Marine PFC.
- He's a little loaded. You seen him?
- He ain't here.
He come in here 10 minutes ago,
and he ain't come out yet.
- Mind if we take a look?
- Wait!
I said he ain't here!
- I guess maybe we made a mistake.
- Yeah.
Thanks a lot.
Excuse me, please.
Thank you, thank you.
- Let's go, kid. Get up.
- Hold on.
- Come on, you gotta get out of here.
- Leave me alone!
- This is my life. I'll do what I want with it!
- Come on.
- She rolled him.
- Where's his dough?
Where's his dough?
I got it.
- She's gone.
- It's all right. It's all right.
Dear John letter. She's gonna
have a baby. She got married.
See what happens when you fall for one broad?
Let's get him out of here.
Come on, come on!
She's gone.
We lost contact with Fox Company.
Soon as the boys finish chow,
I'll have them run a line up.
All right.
- You got your Indians working?
- Yes, sir. Right over here.
Lighttower and his all-Navajo network.
That Huxley's really a smart boy.
He's gonna foul up the Japs
so they can't intercept our messages.
Seems that he read someplace that
they used Sioux talkers in World War I.
You can stop. We know you're reading
High Pockets the Riot Act.
Mr. Jones, I hate to interrupt your meal hour...
...but when you finish feeding your face,
I want you to run a line up to Fox Company.
Yes, sir. Right, sir.
On the double, sir.
Come on. If I don't get this dame's sister
a date, I'll be out in the cold.
No, thanks.
Man, you're the limit.
You gotta loosen up sometimes.
I enjoy myself on liberty.
- What do you do?
- Ride the San Diego Coronado Ferryboat.
You what?
Take a boat ride.
You ought to try it sometime, Andy.
It's very pleasant.
It gives me a chance to think.
I might write a book about all this one of these days.
You ride the Coronado Ferry.
Marion, believe me, I think you will write that book.
Excuse me.
I don't seem to have a light.
Don't think I'm forward,
but I've seen you here before.
I travel to Coronado every night.
You're almost getting to be a fixture.
I was curious.
It's quiet here. I can think.
No, not really.
I'll bet you're thinking about a girl.
I haven't got a girl.
No man has a girl back home
when he's talking to a girl in San Diego.
Look, lady, I'm not one of those guys.
There are things that mean more to me
than a brief conversation.
I'll bet you really don't have a girl.
I said I didn't.
Forgive me.
I shouldn't have bothered you.
I'm sorry.
It's sort of hard to explain.
But being out here, for me, well, I can think.
Things make sense.
That rat race back there's almost another world.
What do you think about, Marine?
I think about how I'd like to write
about the war and this city and the guys.
I suppose you think I'm off my rocker.
- How old are you?
- Nineteen.
A completely honest gyrene.
You're one for the books.
You should have said 25 to impress me.
Is it a crime to be 19?
My name's Marion, Marion Hotchkiss.
You said you take this boat often.
Maybe I'll see you again.
Could be.
Try your skill here.
Ten shots for a quarter.
Everybody wins here.
Ten shots for a quarter here.
- Give me a bourbon and Scotch.
- What?
Well, just give me what that guy's got.
I'm gonna tell you, buddy.
I'm gonna tell you, I don't like Huxley.
He's a nice guy, I know, I know,
but I don't like him, see?
You know, I don't like this lousy town.
I don't like the people in it, see?
I like people.
I like people who likes me, see?
All the people here cares about is your money.
Lousy, rotten money.
Did I ever tell you about Kathy?
She's my girl.
She's a character, but she's cute.
Feeling better?
Where am I?
You'd better take this.
- How did I get here?
- You're at the USO.
Some Marines dropped you off.
Never again.
Thanks a lot for...
...for taking me in.
You'd better get back to camp.
Sleep it off.
I guess I'd better.
Thanks again, Ms...?
Mrs. Yarborough.
- Mrs. Yarborough?
- Yes?
I was wondering if you'd walk me to the bus depot.
I'm sorry. I'm terribly busy.
Can I ask you something?
I know working one of these clubs
you hear this all the time...
...but I haven't talked to a woman for almost six months.
I just thought that...
Wash up.
I'll get my coat.
I had a crush on a football player one time.
How come you live in San Diego
and run the USO club?
The USO keeps me busy.
Vernon... Mr. Yarborough's
what you call a dollar-a-year man.
He tours the Pacific.
He only gets in a couple of days a month.
I found commuting from Illinois
pretty difficult these days... I've sort of become a Navy wife till the war's over.
Guess you have a pretty fancy place
in Arlington Heights.
It wasn't always that way, I can tell you.
I come from a family of nine girls.
Well, let's not fall into a dirge.
Say, young man, USO has a hayride
every Friday night.
I highly recommend it instead of getting drunk.
- I shouldn't smoke on the street.
- Go on.
I'd better go back.
You're not sorry.
Neither am I.
I don't know what got into me.
I've got to go back.
I'll see you Friday.
- All right, try it.
- Nothing coming in.
I tell you, it's completely gone, Mac.
- Fix it.
- Fix it?!
Sir, the TD Y's on the blink again.
- Keep some runners handy.
- They're standing by.
Them radios aren't worth
the tubes they're made of.
Do you feel you're incapable of operating
with the present equipment?
None of my equipment would've
helped Custer at Little Bighorn.
Sergeant, we're also carrying small arms from World War I.
Now, I'm not going through our present equipment roster.
But you keep one thing in
Until we're issued new gear, we'll get 100% efficiency...
...out of every last piece we have now.
And we'll train these men in such a manner
as to overcome faults in the equipment.
- Is that clear?
- Very clear.
- Are you the communicator on this lash-up?
- Yes, sir.
Well, then start communicating.
That's it.
It's a beautiful story, Marion.
Do you really like it?
Very much.
I like meeting you here every liberty.
I like talking to you.
Me too.
Let me tell you something
about my writing these stories.
Just being with you, it's untied a lot of knots.
Don't stop me now.
I don't get this brave very often.
Rae, I just never could write until I met you.
Does that sound funny?
You're a sweet kid.
You'll be a big writer someday.
Rae, how about our meeting
in San Diego next liberty?
We can have dinner and take in a show.
Couldn't we go on just meeting here?
We've been seeing each other for a month,
but it's always here on the ferry.
I can't.
What do you mean you can't?
I just can't.
I thought you liked me.
Of course I like you, Marion.
Would I sit here until dawn
every time you were in if I didn't?
If you want to make a big secret of it, I...
- I guess I'd better shove.
- Marion?
Will you be here next liberty?
I'll be here.
Goodness, that was fun.
I haven't been on a hayride in years.
Come on in.
- May I fix you a drink?
- I gave it up for hayrides, remember?
Oh, yes.
If you'll excuse me a minute, I think I'll freshen up.
This darn hay is driving me nuts.
Sorry. I felt kind of itchy.
A buddy of mine back at the base reads a lot.
I'll bet he's read all those books.
Nice place you've got here.
Got a pool too, huh?
Won't you change your mind about that drink?
I guess I better shove off for camp.
Will I...?
Will I see you tomorrow night?
I shouldn't.
Oh, all right. I'll see you.
You should have fun like this more often.
I've been too busy.
With all this, I...
I guess you have everything.
I have everything I want, Danny.
I had nothing before I met my husband.
Do you know, I...
I think I will take that drink.
This darn hay is driving me nuts.
I know how we can get rid of it.
Let's take a dip in the pool.
I haven't got a suit.
Those are Vernon's. Put them on.
I'll be out in a jiffy.
Listen, I gotta get back to the base.
I'll drive you back.
Don't forget my drink.
Scotch over ice.
If I don't get back on time,
I'll be peeling spuds for two years.
What is it, dear?
I said...
Never mind.
- Ready?
- All clear.
For a dollar-a-year man,
I'd say Vernon eats pretty well.
Come on.
Wait a minute, not so fast!
I'm liable to lose these.
I'll call you.
I'm in.
All right.
Three aces.
Who owns this deck of cards?
I do.
You accusing me of something dishonest?
You got three aces, I got three aces.
And I got one too.
- Catch him!
- Catch him!
- Catch him!
- Catch him!
All right, Forrester, you're relieved.
Wait a minute.
I want to talk to you.
You know, it took me four years to make PFC.
You made it in three months.
I had you figured for a bright boy.
But for the last month, you've smelled up
every radio you've operated.
Now, do you want to tell me
what's going on in San Diego?
- It's none of your business.
- It is when it affects your work.
And when you go into town on fake liberty passes.
Who do you think you're snowing?
All right. I'll do better.
You'll have to.
The major got a letter from your father.
You haven't written your family in over a month.
It might be a good idea to let them know
whether you're alive or dead.
Are you ordering me to write?
The major's arranged for you to talk to
your family long distance tonight at 8:30.
Sharp. Be there.
Now, go get some chow.
- Hello?
- Son.
- Hello, son.
- Hello, Dad.
- Are you all right?
- Dad, I'm fine, just fine.
- Well, is anything wrong out there?
- No. No.
I'm sorry about not writing.
I'll get a letter off tonight.
We were kind of worried.
- Is Mother there?
- I sent her to a show.
I wanted to be sure everything was all right.
Son, there's someone here who wants to talk to you.
Hello, Danny.
Kathy, I...
Danny, I...
It's still the same way with me.
Kitten, honey...
Kitten, I love you.
I love you too, Danny.
Major Huxley, sir?
Come in, Mac.
Forrester's furlough papers
are ready for your signature, sir.
Thank you.
You don't like this, do you?
Giving this boy a furlough?
That's not for me to decide, sir.
Sit down, Mac.
You and I have been soldiering for a long time.
Long enough to know that we're in
the loneliest business in the world.
But these kids...
Mac, a lonely boy can get into trouble.
I know that a few weeks at home
can straighten him out.
- I think it will too, sir.
- Remember, these kids aren't professionals.
Their reason for being here is different than ours.
They're wartime people.
But I believe we can make them the kind
of Marines we've got to have.
It's not the furlough, sir.
Let's have it, Mac.
Sure, major.
May I speak freely?
Please do.
I've been soldiering long enough to know
a commander can't get involved... the personal lives of his men.
Nobody's that strong.
You're going to end up tearing your heart out.
- Process these papers.
- Yes, sir.
I'm sorry I'm late.
I should be angry.
I waited last night too.
An hour at the gate.
It was impossible for me to get liberty.
Is anything wrong?
I said, is anything wrong?
Why didn't you come last night?
I had to study.
Besides, I...
- I was broke.
- You know that doesn't make any difference.
It does to me.
We're washed-up, aren't we?
It completes the circle.
Danny Forrester, all-American boy.
I knew you'd catch up to yourself sooner or later.
The little girl back home?
- You think I'm a tramp, don't you, Danny?
- No.
Don't be nice.
Any guy in the world would be lucky
to have you for a wife.
It's just one of those things...
...that wouldn't have happened
if the world was in its right senses.
Right senses.
That's the trouble with me.
I've always been in my right senses.
I'm a clubwoman in her right senses.
Know what I was going to do when you told me this?
I was going to make a fight for you.
For a while there, nothing mattered to
My home. My husband.
The life I've trained for.
Elaine, please don't.
It's farewell?
Maybe I'll go out and get drunk.
Maybe some other Marine will take pity on me.
- How about a cup of coffee?
- You're up early this morning.
I came in to see you.
Didn't think you'd make it.
- Hey, where's your good-looking buddy?
- You mean Danny?
The jerk got lonesome for his gal
and went back to Baltimore.
Oh, yeah. Baltimore.
That's where the oysters come from, isn't it?
You know what oysters are good for, don't you?
Too bad we haven't got any.
Try some eggs.
They're just as good.
Ruby, why don't you and me go to
Mission Beach? I'll teach you how to dive.
- More tricks?
- Yeah.
That sure was good, Mom.
I've heard terrible stories about what they fed you.
It's a wonder you gained weight.
I'll gather these dishes.
I've got to show the kids
my Marine hat...
...and tell them you rode home
in a Flying Fortress.
- Well, are you smoking now, son?
- I'm full of vices.
- It sure is great to be home, Dad.
- Well, good to have you back.
- Kathy know you're home yet?
- She wasn't expecting me till tomorrow.
My catching a plane hop
was kind of lucky.
Here. Why don't you take the car
and run over and see her.
Thanks, Dad.
- Danny, I do love you.
- Kathy...
It's all right, darling.
It's all right.
I'm sorry.
We just got carried away.
Remember the night we drove out this way
and went swimming in the moonlight?
Come on.
Let's take a walk along the beach.
- It looks wonderful!
- Kathy, come back. Stop acting like a baby.
Fine Marine you turned out to be.
- What, afraid to get your feet wet?
- Act your age, will you?
Come on in. It's wonderful.
You big sissy!
You're a coward! You're yellow!
- Hey! You got me all wet!
- Chicken!
I'll show you. You'll be sorry!
You've got to catch me first!
Kitten, it's getting late.
We'd better go now.
I don't want to go.
I don't ever want to go.
Danny, we'll be so happy.
You're beautiful.
I just love to look at you.
Am I really beautiful?
I always want to look nice for you.
Keep on dreaming, will you?
- Danny?
- What?
Do you like me as well as that girl in San Diego?
It's all right, darling.
I've known about it all the time.
I knew when you didn't write.
And I don't care.
I've got you now.
There will never be another girl anymore, Kathy.
Never anyone but you.
I love you.
I love you.
Hector, if you had any gumption, you'd go get your shotgun.
Be quiet, Martha.
I'm gonna see that the military authorities
take care of your son, Forrester!
They may have been in an accident.
It's my daughter. Remember that.
My daughter!
Here they come now, he's kissing her!
Bud, go on upstairs now.
Get ready for school.
Where have you two been?
What have you done, son?
Shame, shame, shame!
- How could you have done this?
- I'll see you behind bars!
- I suggest we all lower our voices.
- I'm taking this to court!
We didn't do anything wrong.
No? You and your mother wait in the car.
Mom, Dad, please!
- We were married in Upton.
- What?!
- We were married in Upton.
- Married?
- You're not even dry behind the ears yet!
- But, Daddy, I love him.
Heaven help us!
Oh, Mom.
- You sent for me, sir.
- Yes, I sent for you.
What have you got in that radio platoon
of yours, the battalion clowns?
- I'm afraid I don't understand the major.
- Then the major will explain.
On every field problem, your boys get
the 3rd Battalion to lay miles of wire...
...and then they just sit back
and tap the lines...
...let the other guys do the work.
Not only that, but they've fieldstripped
the 1 st Battalion's radio shack...
...taken everything that wasn't nailed down.
While the rest of the regiment
transmits dull, routine military messages...
...your boys want to liven up the party
by sending limericks.
They seem to be under the impression
we hold field problems...
...just to allow them to express
their poetic souls.
Now, listen to this.
This was decoded yesterday.
Here's the answer Weapons Company got
when they sent an ammunition
There was an old sheep from Algiers
Who said to his harem, "My dears
You may..."
There's nothing funny about this,
this is just plain filth!
I know it is. The first time I received
that message was in Shanghai in '31.
A young 2nd lieutenant sent it to me.
I believe his name was Huxley, sir.
Well, you ought to have him
show a little discretion.
Tell him to use a better code.
If Regiment got ahold of this,
I might have trouble explaining it.
- I'll square them away, sir.
- Okay, Mac.
They're shaping into a real outfit.
Beginning to look like Marines.
Yes, sir.
- Shipping orders?
- That's it.
Looks like we'll be shoving off any day now.
What do you think?
Well, they've come a long way
in the last 30 days.
Of course, we could always use more time.
Time is something we're not going to be able to buy.
The reports from Guadalcanal look very bad.
Well, get your working parties organized.
- Give them all the liberty they can handle.
- Right.
I guess I ought to run in to
San Diego a few hours, see the wife.
You better produce broads.
You think I'm dishonest?
Don't worry about it, I'll get them there.
The boys are really gonna start celebrating.
I wish I could go in and get crocked with them.
Sometimes I'd like to take off
these oak leaves and be a human being.
Maybe you and I could just shove off together, Sam.
It's not the same thing as being
surrounded by your buddies.
You know, Wellman, this uniform is the only thing...
...that's ever really meant anything to me, except Jean.
I haven't been able to give her much of a life.
She's married to a Marine, Sam.
It's these last days I hate.
The anticipation starts, and we both get quiet.
I'll come in, she'll set the table.
We'll talk of small things,
pretending nothing's wrong.
And then when the ship's loaded...
...standing by...
Every morning when I leave her...
...neither of us knowing whether
maybe this is the last time.
And then I go back again that evening.
That look on her face when I open the door...
Then we start pretending all over again.
Pretending that nothing's happening.
But in the middle of the night, she'll...
She'll cry.
She'll go into the next room so I won't hear her.
I guess we should be used to it by now.
What is it that makes a woman go on loving a man...
...that she can't even claim belongs to her?
Hold on a minute, honey.
Quiet, you guys!
This dame will think we're drunk!
Why don't you pick up a couple
of gals and come over to the club?
I want to propose a toast
to the best outfit in the Marine Corps.
Huxley's Hookers! Come on!
Now you're a real outfit.
And a toast to the girl who ain't
with us on our last beer
Good old Danny Forrester!
- I'll drink to that!
- I'm not gonna drink to that jerk!
- Why not?
- Getting married! Wouldn't listen to Andy.
- Wait till he gets in tomorrow!
- You should try it.
Me and my faithful Indian companion here
have a terrific idea.
We think we should all make a vow to have
a reunion when this here war is over!
That's the most beautiful idea I ever heard.
We also think that we should be
blood brothers. Real blood brothers.
Because blood brothers is thicker
than, than beer brothers.
- Most beautiful idea I ever heard.
- Speedy, the knife.
So's we can all cut our thumbs
and shake like a Navajo.
- Right in the meaty part.
- Cut it up. Cut it, cut it.
I guess it's not gonna work.
It's a good idea, but it's just...
Okay, brother, let's have some blood.
Let's do it first thing tomorrow.
Come on right over.
- Bartender, bring them brews!
- Did you get those broads?
Did I get them? They'll be right over.
But remember, you guys, lay off
my personal babe. She's mine.
Wait'll you see this number.
She's as good as she looks.
Marion, come on, drink up.
Joe's got some broads coming over
with his personal recommendation.
He don't drink, smoke or go out with women.
What's he live for?
He lives for the Marine Corps, kid.
Live it up, live it up!
The broads are finally here!
Hi, baby, how are you?
Sit down, I'll get you a bottle of bourbon.
Harry, double bourbon.
This here is the only gal that can
make a Jerry lose his marbles.
Spanish Joe's babe!
- Now what's the matter with him?
- Shut up!
See what happens when you fall for one dame?
Easy, Marion. Take it easy.
November 1942, 11 months after Pearl Harbor...
... our battalion dropped anchor in Wellington Bay.
The fighting men of New Zealand
were far away in the Middle East...
... while their courageous country was armed
with not much more than pitchforks.
And it was, quote, "Condition Black,
enemy invasion anticipated, " unquote.
At Camp McKay, 30 miles outside
of Wellington, we set up for business.
From here on out, we would be
racing against the clock.
For on another island miles to the north,
the 1 st Marine Division...
... had taken the first step
of the long road back.
Major, whoever drew up
this training schedule is wacky.
It calls for a hike tonight
and a 25-mile hike tomorrow.
That's right, I drew up that schedule.
But these boys have been cooped up aboard
ship for three weeks. That's a bit rough.
It's gonna get rougher where we're going.
First we're gonna get this camp shipshape...
...then we're gonna work out the kinks
before anybody gets liberty.
High Pockets promised he'd work the kinks
out of us, and he kept his promise.
The field problems ran day and night.
We were on the move from dawn to dusk
and back to dawn.
- Ready to move out, sir.
- Let's go.
And it was 10 long days before
he eased up and gave us liberty.
The wonderful people of New Zealand
loved the kids in green...
... and to us, well, it was almost like home.
He's full of whiskey and donuts.
You gotta stop acting like this,
you'll get shipped out.
Marion snapped out of it.
You smell up the network every time
you're on radio. Wise up to yourself!
Go on. You guys slobber over me
like I'm a 10-year-old. Leave me alone.
Sober him up on that stuff
before the MPs get to him.
- What would you like, please?
- A cup of joe...
...and one of them crumpet things.
My name's Andy Hookens.
I didn't catch yours.
I didn't throw it.
Nice country you got here.
I'm from Washington state.
Not to be confused with the capitol.
I know.
Lots of trees in Washington.
I'm the boy who chopped most of them down.
A modest Yank. Well, well.
Excuse me.
Don't flit off again, honey.
I'd like some more coffee.
- Are you persistent too?
- I never let go.
- You're fighting a losing battle, you know.
- The story of my life.
- You can't score with that one, buddy.
- Just move over and give me some room.
- That's Pat Rogers. Mrs. Pat Rogers.
- You shouldn't let that scare you, junior.
Are you still here?
You know, you're hurting my morale.
I've met nothing but nice people here.
Aren't you gonna be nice to me too?
- You're fresh.
- And lonesome too.
I was just thinking of a nice, quiet evening of...
...of movies and dancing.
Does that ring a bell?
But there are lots of girls
about the canteen dying to know...
...what you could do with a tree.
- Would you like me to introduce you to one?
- No, I've met one.
Hey, Andy. We're shoving off.
Come on.
- You better go. You'll miss your train.
- You seem to know the schedule.
Well, nice try, Andy.
No harm done, huh?
No harm done.
Nice knowing you, Pat.
Coffee's cheaper than beer.
I'll make another try next liberty.
It won't do you any good.
Let's go. Come on.
You guys get him back to camp.
- What are you gonna do?
- I'll tell you about it later.
- Hey, slow down.
- Softy!
Andy, I had a wonderful time.
I haven't been to the cinema in weeks.
We'll do it again soon.
- Mind if I come up for a cup of coffee?
- It's awfully late.
Andy! Please don't ruin it.
- Come on, cut the act.
- I beg your pardon?
We've been sparring around long enough.
- I think you'd better go.
- Really?
What do you take me for?
- You're no different than any other woman.
- Please go.
You're putting on a good show, Pat.
What have you been doing with the Marines in town?
Pining your heart out for your husband
while he's sweating it away in Africa?
I know you're married.
My husband was killed in El Alamein.
Topeka white.
Fox Company? Yes, sir.
- Who's Pat Rogers?
- What?
I read code, you know.
Danny, I want to ask you something.
You ever apologize to anyone?
What kind of a stupid question is that?
What I mean to say is... do something you're real sorry for,
and go and say you're real sorry.
You know what I mean?
You ever apologize to a broad?
Sure, lots of times. Why?
Nothing. Nothing, I just wondered.
I'm just wondering.
- Good night.
- Good night.
- I'm warning you, keep away from me.
- I'd like to talk to you.
I don't want anything to do with you.
Leave me alone.
I came here to say something to you,
and I'd like to say it. I want you to listen.
Well, make it quick.
Pat, I never apologized to anyone
for anything as long as I've lived.
I've never said I'm sorry for anything.
But I'm saying I'm sorry to you.
I feel real bad.
And I couldn't rest easy.
I'm very, very sorry, Pat.
That's all I wanted to say.
Well, that was nice, Andy.
We all make mistakes, you know.
I don't expect you'd care to go out with me again.
I don't blame you.
I won't bother you anymore.
There's a good film at the Majestic.
Talk about your iron men.
These kids are tougher, they're a new metal.
We ought to call it Huxley's Harlots.
I think they'll be able to take care
of themselves now.
Excuse me, sir.
Request permission to dismiss the troops.
- What's your rush?
- Liberty train leaves in 30 minutes.
You gonna go with the kids
or stay in camp with us old men?
I think I'll go with the kids.
Maybe I can scare up an old woman.
All right, turn them loose.
Marion, there's that book you lent me.
I couldn't go it.
Hamlet reminds me of
an uncle of mine in Dayton...
You know.
Is that a letter from home?
No, it's from Rae.
The girl on the ferryboat?
I didn't know you two were writing.
I haven't.
She has ever since we left the States.
Almost like I'm the guy that really counts.
She even left San Diego.
She's a secretary in a defense plant
up near San Francisco now.
Mac, you've kicked around a long time.
What would you do in my shoes?
I don't know, Marion. You're the only guy
that can answer that.
I've seen a lot of funny things happen on this lash-up.
I've seen girls like Rae...
And I know Marines that took a chance
on them and married them.
Most of the time it worked out okay.
They're a funny breed, kid.
If they find the right man...
...they can give him the love
and the understanding...
...that all of us want but few of us get.
But the guy has to be a big man.
He's gotta erase an awful lot
of ugly pictures from his mind.
Gomez, come here.
Where'd you get them ribbons?
- Army-Navy store.
- Take them off before you get locked up.
Strike me, look at the medals on the bloke.
He must have been everywhere, eh, Marine?
This boy's been around, buddy.
You see this one here?
Silver Star. Won it for gallantry on Guadalcanal.
I'll never forget that day as long as I live.
Me and my boys were on this patrol...
...over the Kokumbona River
near Tassafaronga Point.
And what happens?
I get lost from the rest of the men.
So I come to this clearing.
It's blazing hot...
...120 in the shade, sweat gushing off me...
...when all of a sudden, boom!
Everything hit the fan.
They must have thought I was a general.
Japs popped up from everywhere.
I peer over to my left, and what do I see?
- What was it?
- What was it?
A Jap machine gun looking right down my throat.
- Blimey! What do you do?
- So I look for a fast exit.
But in back of me, three Japs with rifles.
Gracious goodness!
Go on! Go on!
And to top it off,
a Jap sniper sat in a treetop.
- Makes me shudder to think of it.
- What happened?
So I say to myself, "Joe...
...a hundred broads from Chicago
to St. Louis will be grieving today."
There was nothing for me to do
but to lower my head and charge!
- Out with it! What happened?
- What happened? I got killed!
I've been had.
- Well, I'll see you, kid.
- Mac?
Dear Rae, it was good
to hear from you again...
On Thanksgiving, the whole outfit
got three-day passes...
... and we headed for Wellington.
All except Andy. He disappeared.
We found out later that Pat had invited
him to her father's farm outside Masterton.
Well, now, has my daughter shown you all of the farm?
Oh, yes, and I never knew
there could be a place like this.
Come with me. I've got something
I want to show you.
- Do you want to come along?
- I'll help Mama with dinner.
Come on, Hank.
What do you think of him, Mother?
Why, he's built like a bull.
- What kind of a soldier is he?
- He's not a soldier, he's a Marine.
A Marine?
Oh, yes, they call them roughnecks.
No, no, leathernecks.
You'd need a horse's collar to get around him.
Patty is touchy about
what I'm going to show you...
...but she loves this land
as all of us Rogers do. That I know.
Running off to Wellington
proved nothing to the contrary.
When the wire came about her husband,
she just left us...
...just couldn't get adjusted to herself.
Then when her brother Timmy was killed,
she didn't seem to want to ever return.
This land was bought for Timmy.
I suppose the land belongs to Patty now.
My son planted that ax before he went away.
He said he'd return one day and clear this land.
I'm afraid the ax is frozen, Andy.
You handle that ax just like my son Timmy.
As I was saying, Andy, life here is simple.
Not much like your America.
A good wife, a good pipe, a good dog...
...and a piece of land.
It's the only way to live.
I hope you don't mind
the whole clan busting in tonight...
...but we haven't seen Patty in a long time...
...and we need cause to gather now and then.
They were all wonderful.
I hope they liked me.
Yank, they loved you.
It's not a happy lot for us, Andy.
So many of our boys gone.
Come along, old girl.
Let's turn in and give the young folks
a chance before the log dies out.
- Good night.
- Good night.
Pat, we're leaving New Zealand soon,
and I want you to know one thing.
I'm glad I came here,
and I'm glad I found you.
You don't know how fouled up I am inside me.
It's the kind of a thing
a guy can't shake overnight.
The only women I ever knew
were in the halls of the lumber towns.
Maybe it's a good thing about us leaving.
Maybe I can get myself squared away.
I know how scared you are over losing
your husband and your brother.
Do you suppose you'll
ever come back to New Zealand?
You can never tell about the Marines.
Here today, gone tomorrow.
Andy, stop.
We both know you'll never come back.
Oh, this rotten war.
Look, I know we're just friends,
but would you write me?
I never get letters like the other guys.
Would you write me?
I mean, nothing to tie you down.
Just stuff about the farm and your family, things like that.
Would you?
I'll write to you.
Pat, I never knew there could be
a place like this...
...or people so nice. Like your family.
Honey, could I...?
No, Andy, no.
We mustn't. We mustn't.
Don't be angry with me, Andy.
I'm not angry, Pat.
I understand, honey.
- Good night.
- Good night.
Time had run out.
Christmas Eve 1942 services were held
in a warehouse on the Wellington docks.
Afterwards we boarded the transports
known as the Unholy Four...
... and steamed from Wellington Bay full of fight...
... and confident that we
would soon be storming a beachhead.
A week later we dropped anchor in Skylark Channel...
... off an island known as Guadalcanal.
And then we got the word.
There would be no beachhead here
for Huxley's battalion.
A dirty mop-up campaign.
As Marines, we took it
like any other order...
... but it was a blow
to the pride of Huxley's Harlots.
Weary Marines of the 1 st Division,
after five months fighting...
... stood by on the beach to be relieved.
- Say, what town is this, cousin?
- Guadalcanal, buster.
I didn't catch the name
of your fine-looking outfit.
The fighting 6th Marines.
Well, well, well.
Hey, boys! Strike up the band!
Huxley's Hookers finally got here!
Sarge, where's the nearest gin mill?
What do you guys think this is?! Fall in
on the double! Column of three! Snap it up!
- Get off the road!
- Get off the road!
We've had some casualties, sir.
Evacuate them to the beach.
- Call them in, Mac.
- On the road! Let's go!
There were only a few actual skirmishes
with the elusive Japanese.
Our main enemy became the jungle.
The mosquitoes and the land crabs.
Malaria. Yellow jaundice and fungus.
The blistering sun
and the tropical downpours.
For a month we played cat and mouse
with the remnants of the Japanese force.
And then at last we cornered them
on an end of the island...
... and brought an end to organized
resistance on Guadalcanal.
We boarded ship again and sailed for Wellington.
We were a dog-tired crew, but there
hadn't been much of a fight to talk about.
Perhaps the greatest wound of all
had been to our pride.
As New Zealand appeared on the horizon...
... we eagerly anticipated
renewing old friendships.
And for some, seeing loved ones again.
Hello, Pat.
I went down to the canteen,
but you weren't there.
Well, don't stand there,
come on in.
We knew you were back, but it
was so difficult to get information...
...I didn't know when to expect you.
Andy, do sit down.
I have some tea ready.
We no sooner than dumped our gear
than they gave us 10 days leave.
I got myself a hotel room
here in Wellington.
You don't look well.
It's the heat. I'm all right.
The battalion lost a couple of dozen guys.
Remember Ski? He got it.
I guess he didn't want
to live anyhow, though.
A lot of the guys
are sick and wounded.
We'll be okay in a couple of weeks, though.
I shouldn't have filled it so full.
I'm all right, just a little shaky.
Guadalcanal must have been frightful.
I shan't ask you about it.
Well, I got me a leave.
Three months furlough.
I mean three months back pay.
I think I'll take me in
some of the country.
You look as though you could do
with some rest.
- Why don't you go to the farm?
- I don't want to go to the farm.
- I feel so hot.
- Andy...
I think you might have malaria, Andy.
No, I'd know malaria.
You're burning up.
- Let me get you to a hospital.
- I'm not going to a hospital.
Don't be so obstinate.
I'm not gonna spend my furlough in a hospital.
Call me a cab, I'll go to my hotel and sweat it out.
I'll call you in a couple of days.
I'll be all right.
Please let me take you to a hospital.
I'm freezing, honey.
I'm getting those chills again.
I'm freezing.
Get me a blanket.
Ski! Ski!
Run for it! Ski!
Run for it, Ski! Run for it.
Run for it, Ski!
Run for it, Ski!
Run for it! Ski! Run for it!
Run for it, Ski!
Ski, Ski! Run, run!
How long have I been here?
Three days.
I'm sorry, honey.
I must say, you gave me a bit of a fright.
You look all beat.
Did you get any sleep?
I caught a wink or two.
You've been through hell.
Nobody's ever done anything
like this for me before.
Andy, I was so frightened.
I'm not keeping any more lamps in the window...
...or waiting for any more ships in the bay.
This war has done me in.
I want you while you're here.
That's all that matters, that's all.
It's not right for you to talk like that.
Andy, you're here and you're safe.
I can have you for a little while.
That's all that matters to me,
is this day and this minute.
I'm tired, Andy.
I'm tired of living in fear.
I can thank my boys for these.
One sour note.
Mac's boys are acting up again.
More limericks.
- Fox Company.
- Get Mac up here, please.
What are you trying to hide?
- We decided we wouldn't let you see this.
- Let's have it.
"Report on the 8th Marines'
Hike to Foxton."
Let's see, now.
"Sixty miles to Foxton.
Concrete highway.
Bivouac in the field.
Trucks drove them back to camp.
Twenty hours marching time."
Great Scott, that's no record. Our battalion
can cut hours off of that time.
I knew you'd say that.
Get this to Message Center
to inform all company commanders.
The 1 st Battalion's already
scheduled a hike...
...but I think it's a bit soon for us
to attempt a 60-mile hike with full packs.
If you ask me,
it's just what the doctor ordered.
We'll crack the record.
And as far as the 1 st Battalion goes...
...they haven't seen the day we couldn't
hike them into the ground. Come in.
Get with Operations on that.
They can start typing it up.
I understand those boys of yours
have been getting poetic again.
And just because I gave permission
to build a clubhouse...
...I didn't okay your stealing
every loose board in camp.
I guess they're just red-blooded American boys, colonel.
How did you find out I made lieutenant colonel?
I just heard myself.
Communicator's job is to communicate, sir.
Well, you tell those red-blooded
American boys of yours...
...they better enjoy that dance tonight,
because after that...
We know all about that too, sir.
- You know all about what?
- The 60-mile hike to Foxton.
My outfit handles Message Center too.
- Get out of here.
- Yes, sir.
Colonel Huxley.
Your Honor, I'd like to have you meet
some of the ladies we're dancing with.
This is...
I've forgotten their names, but make yourself at home.
I'll get us some beer.
Hello, Pedro.
Incidentally, congratulations on your Silver Star.
Gracias, my storywriting friend.
Like I was saying, we've got the best sergeant,
the best outfit...
...and the best colonel in the Marine Corps.
- Excuse me, colonel.
Have you seen the view from the terrace, sir?
I'd like to have you see it, sir.
If you'll excuse me.
- What is this, Mac?
- The view's best from over here, sir.
Compliments of those red-blooded
American boys of yours, sir.
- A little fuel for Foxton.
- Yes, sir.
Sir! Colonel Huxley!
Colonel Huxley, Mrs. Rogers.
Sergeant Mac, Mrs. Rogers.
Beautiful night, isn't it?
Nice dance we're having.
Mac, Andy, come on! These girls want to
hear our marching song! Let's go.
Excuse me, sir.
Excuse me, Pat.
So you're Andy's girl.
I've heard an awful lot about you.
I'll never know how that big lumberjack
ever ran into such a wonderful streak of luck.
And you're High Pockets.
- Oh, excuse me, Colonel Huxley.
- That's all right.
I don't mind High Pockets as long
as they don't call me the old man.
I should be very angry
if they called you the old man.
As a matter of fact, your men adore you.
Well, I don't think I'd go quite that far,
Mrs. Rogers, but thank you.
- My name is Pat.
- Thank you, Pat.
No, don't go in just yet. Please.
I don't get an opportunity like this
very often... talk to such an attractive young lady.
Must be wretched having to keep yourself
isolated from your men.
I see you have a knack for reading people's minds.
You must be a very wise girl, Pat.
It's not hard to see a lonely person...
...even though he is surrounded by 900 Marines.
I imagine you know what it's like to be homesick.
I didn't realize it showed.
- Would you like to see...?
- Your children?
No, we have no children.
This is my wife.
She's lovely.
I know how you must miss her.
Jean has a lot in common with you New Zealand girls.
This war has done that.
You're all soldiers' wives here.
It's funny, she could always read my mind too.
In a great many ways, you remind me of my wife.
Well, I'm sorry, did...?
Did I say something wrong?
I'm not fit to remind you of your wife, colonel.
I'm so ashamed.
I can't use the war as an excuse anymore,
I know that.
But this chance with Andy,
I thought it would mean happiness.
It was a straw, and I grabbed for it.
I see.
Well, I didn't...
You're not the only person in this world
who ever grabbed for a straw.
We all do it sometime in our lives.
But in our mind, in our conscience...
...we have to find out for ourselves
what we can live with and what we can't.
You're the only one who can make that decision.
Nice dance, wasn't it, honey?
I won't be able to see you for a few days.
We're hiking to Foxton.
- We've got something to talk about.
- It'll keep till morning. I'm tired.
It won't keep, Andy.
I'm calling it off between us.
What'd you say?
I don't think I get you.
It's all over, Andy.
Honey, what are you talking about?
Are you nuts?
What have I done?
- I don't want a scene. Please.
- Pat, you're talking crazy.
I know what you may think of me.
I can't do anything about it, it's too late now.
But I'm just not cut out for this sort of thing.
I was miserably mistaken to think
I could live like this.
Whatever you may think is right...
It just doesn't matter anymore.
- I'm crazy about you!
- Andy, please...
I don't want a showdown. I'm not asking
anything from you, I just want you to go.
I can't stay in this country and not be able to see you.
Don't shout!
I know this is sudden.
You're shocked and hurt.
- You're liable to say something you'll regret.
- I'm regretting nothing. I love you!
Don't say that, you know you don't mean it.
Honey, I could never leave you, I love you.
I got an idea. Let's get married.
Let's get married when I get back from Foxton.
I know how you feel about the war,
but us Swedes are tough. I know I'll make it.
We've got to take a chance.
Oh, Andy...
Andy, I'm so frightened!
I'll see the chaplain. It's a lot of red tape,
but I'll get it squared away.
Pat, I ain't never been so happy in my life.
- Andy.
- What, honey?
If we have a little boy...
...would you mind terribly if we named him Timmy...
...after my brother?
Are we gonna have a baby?
We're gonna have a baby?
- Yes, Andy.
- Why didn't you tell me, honey?
I didn't want to hold you that way.
You'd have let me go?
You'd have sent me away,
you'd have done that for me?
Andy, I've loved you a long, long time.
What other decision could I make?
At least I knew I had something
this war couldn't take away from me.
Hut, two, three, four.
Hut, two, three, four.
Column, right, huh!
- How far we going?
- About 60 miles.
- I wonder where we'll bed down tonight.
- Wherever it is, you'll be alone.
From the moment we left the camp,
we knew High Pockets meant business.
The pace never slackened through
a torrent of rain and a long, black night.
The sun felt good the next morning,
but the rain had taken its toll.
Wet feet and hard dirt aren't teammates.
There must have been 10,000 blisters in the column.
In 17 hours' marching time, the column
stood on a hill overlooking Foxton.
Hold up the column!
And it would be a cold day in July
before anyone cracked this record.
There's the 1 st Battalion.
Looks like they just got in.
Didn't they leave camp the day before we did?
- That's right.
- We just radioed the 1 st Battalion.
We beat their time by five hours.
And it looks like we beat
the 8th Marines' record by three.
Their trucks are coming tomorrow
to take them back to McKay.
Don't you think maybe we rate priority?
Our boys should ride back first
after the job they turned in.
Company commanders, take charge!
Meiskar, Clark, Kreb, out!
Hookens, over here.
- Gomez, set up there.
- Smoking lamp is lit!
Corporal Forrester requests permission
to speak to you.
All right.
What's on your mind?
I know this is out of line,
but we haven't got much time...
Get to the point.
Well, PFC Andy Hookens is in bad shape.
His feet are all bloody,
and I think he's got a touch of the bug.
He refuses to turn in.
Could you send him back with the 1 st Battalion?
You're out of line.
That's for Sick Bay to decide.
- I don't grant special favors to any man.
- Colonel Huxley...
Just a minute, Mac.
You know this is out of order.
Let's have the real reason.
Hookens and Pat Rogers want to get married.
The scuttlebutt has it we're shipping out
as soon as we get back.
If he waits for those trucks to come
back for us, he ain't gonna have time.
Not with all the red tape they have to go through.
Request denied.
- Thank you, sir.
- Mac.
Tell Major Wellman to form up
the battalion. We're moving out.
Yes, sir.
Have you gone mad?
I've stood by through all your torture sessions...
...but I'm putting my foot down.
Don't put it down too hard.
It's probably sore.
Why won't you wait for the trucks?
You can't hike these men back to McKay.
They've only had three hours' rest.
Twenty men dropped out coming up here.
You'll hospitalize the entire battalion.
So I'm just a wartime officer,
but I know where humanity ends.
I watched you hike these boys back from Guadalcanal...
...because you wanted to prove how tough you were.
I'm not only gonna hike them back,
but we're gonna break our own record.
What are you trying to prove? You haven't
got a drop of human blood in your veins.
Do you think that enemy
is gonna show us any humanity?
We're in a war, Wellman.
I'll drive them, and I'll drive myself.
When we go into battle again, not one of my
boys will die because he's a straggler.
Not one's gonna die because he's weak.
Get out of my outfit if you can't take it.
I'll make it back if you will.
Company commander, get your men on their feet.
We're moving out.
- Pass the word to the other companies.
- Aye, aye, sir. On your feet!
- Saddle up!
- On your feet!
Boy, I could sure go for a cold glass of beer.
Shut up!
Why don't we keep going?
Every time I stop, I get these shooting pains.
At least I'm good and numb while we're hiking.
I'm going to keep on my feet as long as Huxley does.
Same here.
We're only one day from McKay.
Speak to me.
All right.
Let's hit the road!
On your feet!
Count up!
Come on, kid. On your feet.
You ain't gonna get married out here.
Our feet were pounded into numbness.
The packs cut deep into our shoulders.
But the murderous cadence never let up.
The stronger ones kept the weaker ones going.
Pass the word back.
We're picking up the pace.
All right! Pass the word back!
We're speeding up the pace!
- Keep it closed up back there!
- High Pockets has gone crazy.
Bet he drops before we do.
You laying any odds on that, cousin?
Then, as a man, the whole battalion
became obsessed with a single
To keep marching, pushing Huxley
until he fell flat on his face.
Ten kilometers from Camp McKay.
It might as well have been 100.
We were whipped.
If we hit that road again, I'm dropping out.
That makes two of us.
How about you?
I honestly don't know.
I think I'll sit right here and wait
for them big buses.
I ain't blaming any man in this squad for dropping out now.
But I'm getting back to McKay
if I gotta go on my hands and knees.
We're finished, Sam.
If we try this last 10 kilometers,
we'll lose half the battalion.
I know what's held them up.
They'll hike because they're mad.
And what's more,
they won't quit because they're mad.
We'll make that last piece on our feet.
You're mistaken, we'll need a miracle.
We may have that too in just about a minute.
Well, if you men want to sit
and cry with the 1 st Battalion tonight...
...l'll have them send back
those trucks for you.
A lot of people in this division
don't believe we can make it.
What do you think?
When we hit that camp gate...
...let's give them a look at the best outfit in the Corps!
Left face!
Column left!
Come in.
- Hello, Mac!
- Sir, how are you?
What are you doing,
spying for Father McHale?
No, sir, I leave that to G-2.
I want you to meet two men from my outfit,
Corporal Forrester and PFC Hookens.
- Hookens has got a little problem.
- That's what I'm here for. Sit down, boys.
What seems to be your problem?
Well, sir, that picture
on the bulletin board out there...'s a dead ringer for my girl.
Hookens, of course.
Colonel Huxley called me from Foxton.
He said you'd be around.
He also said that girl's too good for you.
- I won't argue that, sir.
- Looks like I've been blackmailed.
The colonel said if I didn't get you two
hitched without this red tape...
...he'd take his battalion to Father McHale.
Everything's been arranged.
Three-day passes for your squad.
Man in the loan office said just sign there.
You've got orders from the colonel
to get to Wellington on the double.
- Yes, sir!
- Okay.
Thank you, sir.
- Blood brother.
- Thanks.
Ladies and gentlemen, please wait a minute.
A Marine toast to Pat and Andy.
Come on, let's go!
Come on, boy!
It was a wonderful wedding and a wonderful party.
And a terrible headache the next morning.
Two days later we were ordered
to break camp and board ship.
Wait a minute.
- Mac wants you on a work detail.
- Take the detail.
Don't blow your top.
Who do you think you are?
This outfit's been knocking itself out for you,
giving up liberty so you could get ashore.
- Remind me to send them medals.
- What's the matter? Are you yellow?
- Want me to break you in half?
- Stop feeling sorry for yourself.
I've been living with letters
for 13 months.
- There's nothing we can do about it.
- That's what you think.
May I come in? Please.
I should've phoned you, but I didn't have time.
Pat, we've got a problem.
It's been reported to me Andy plans to desert.
I didn't stop him from jumping ship.
I could have.
I can have him taken back in irons now,
but I don't want that.
I want that boy to come back
to his ship on his own two feet.
It's been extremely difficult,
but I've had to discipline myself...
...never to interfere in
the personal affairs of my men.
This is one time I'm forced to.
I have no choice.
I like you too much.
As Andy's commanding officer,
I certainly can't sanction this behavior.
As a man, I do understand it.
Pat, you've done a lot for this boy.
You've given him his place in life.
You can't let him betray himself now.
Betray him to what, Colonel Huxley, his grave?
I haven't forgotten about another boy...
...a boy who was buried at El Alamein.
Do you think you and Andy could ever live in peace?
This would destroy both of you,
even if you got away with it.
I knew this was going to happen.
Why did I let it?
Colonel, where is our war?
Tell me, why do I have to give him up?
- Tell me.
- He's a man. He has a job to do.
You're no different than millions
of other women in this war.
You know what you have to do.
Andy, hold me.
Hold me tightly, darling.
Hold me.
Honey, you're all upset.
I'm here now. I'm here.
I'm not going back to the ship.
I said I'm not going back.
I expected it.
We can make it.
I got it all figured out.
I got a place in Ngaio where I can hide.
Then we'll make a run for it.
Fly to a south island, maybe Australia.
Three or four years, we can come back.
All right, Andy.
You mean it, honey?
- You really mean it?
- Yes, Andy.
We'd best pack right away.
- I'd better not take your radio.
- What do you mean?
You don't want to hear it when your battalion lands.
What will we call the baby?
We should have a nice, common name.
We won't be able to give him our own, you know.
- Let's not worry about that too much.
- Cut it out.
We'll have to change our own name
every month anyway.
We should start out with Smith.
We'll call the baby Joe Smith.
- It's a pretty name, isn't it?
- You're just trying to get me riled up.
- No, I'll go with you.
- What do we owe this lousy war?
- What do we owe the Marines?
- Each other.
You don't care any for me.
You'll have your baby.
That's all you want.
How dare you speak to me like that?
How dare you?
I didn't mean it, Pat.
I didn't mean it.
I'm just going out of my mind.
- I didn't mean it.
- Andy, if that's what you want, I'll go.
I must be crazy, Pat.
Crazy to even ask for something like this.
I'd never be able to look my kid in the face.
I'd lose you too.
I don't know why I ever asked.
I better get back to the ship.
- I'll go with you.
- No, I better go alone.
Do you love me, Pat?
Very much, Andy, very, very much.
You'll write to me, won't you?
Don't worry none if you don't
hear from me, being aboard ship and all.
Take good care of yourself and the baby.
Get up to the farm.
If we're lucky, we'll get back here soon.
But I'll be back as soon as I can.
- You're not sorry about us?
- No.
Just tell me once more how you love me.
I love you, Andy.
I love you.
Tarawa. A name to go down with
Bunker Hill, Gettysburg and the Alamo.
Every man in Huxley's battalion had been positive...
... that this time we'd lead
the division into the beach.
And then the word came through.
We were being used as
the mop-up boys again, the also-rans...
... sealed in our ships while the rest
of the division fought the battle.
When the smoke cleared and what was
left of the division limped off...
... they again told Huxley that he must
find the elusive Japanese garrison...
... who, this time, were hidden
in 45 miles of island atolls.
We cornered them after a four-day chase...
... and in a brief skirmish,
we closed the chapter on Tarawa.
Our casualties were light, but we left behind...
... the kid who might have
written the great American war novel...
... Corporal Marion Hotchkiss, Sister Mary.
Then, January 1944, we made
a 2500-mile voyage to rejoin the division.
Huxley's Harlots, the orphans of the Marine Corps.
Always a bridesmaid, but never a bride.
On one of the remote islands of Hawaii
we were dumped on a desolate camp...
... and for all practical purposes,
disappeared from the face of the earth.
- Good morning, sir.
- Jim.
Sir, we just received word from Headquarters.
The 1 st and 3rd Battalions move out
with the rest of the division.
We're to stand by, break camp, and follow in five days...
...which means we're in reserve again.
We take this battalion in reserve again
over my dead body.
- Jim, get my jeep for me, please.
- Yes, sir.
You didn't waste any time in getting over here.
You requested permission.
What's on your mind?
General, the rest of the division
is getting ready to move out.
My outfit is ordered to stand by in Hawaii.
- We won't leave them there.
- No, sir.
But if you have us scheduled
as reserves again in this campaign...
Just a minute, Huxley.
You don't like your assignment?
No, sir, I don't.
Then I see no reason to carry
this conversation on any further.
Will the general listen to my request?
You're getting quite a reputation as a troublemaker.
You went out of channels on Guadalcanal... try to get your battalion
reassigned to a beachhead.
Sir, no man in this Corps
loves it any more than I do.
No one has a greater respect for military custom.
But those boys of mine have worked hard.
I have the greatest bunch of boys in the world...
...but they've got to have
a chance to prove themselves.
You can't train a champion to a fighting edge...
...and then just throw him away on exhibition matches.
We've sat in reserve and mopped up
while the war went past us.
This may be our last chance, sir.
Give it to us.
Come here, Huxley.
Ever see one of these?
The complete plan for the Saipan Operation.
Hundreds and thousands of pages.
Intelligence. Naval gunfire.
Communications. Artillery.
Landing plan. Engineer.
The personal history of the enemy commander.
Name it, you'll find it there.
Three divisions.
Sixty-thousand men are storming Saipan... give us a base to bomb
the Japanese land round the clock.
But you're ready to question
the labor that went into that plan...
...just because you don't like
your assignment. Who do you think you are?
You can take that book
and throw it in the ocean.
You know as well as I do the book is dead
when the first shot's fired.
It wasn't a book that won us Guadalcanal.
It wasn't a book that kept those boys
coming through the lagoon in Tarawa.
It's those men with the rifles and the guts
that's gonna win your war for you.
We want that beachhead.
Once upon a time, we used to think
you were a bright young man.
There is such a thing as insubordination.
When I came to you, I knew I'd leave here one of two
In command of my battalion
or by the brig.
You might as well court-martial me, sir,
because I'm not going back to my boys...
...and tell them that they're gonna carry
a broom and dustpan again.
You stuck your neck out a long way.
Stand by until I can put through
a change in these orders.
I'm sending your battalion in
on the exposed left flank of Red Beach.
It's the hot spot of the Saipan Campaign.
You can be proud of your victory.
That's all. Get out of here.
Sometimes I think myself
it's a hell of a way to make a living.
And so on June 14, 1944, our task force of the 5th Fleet...
... the mightiest armada ever assembled,
edged close to the enemy bastion of Saipan.
The dawn would bring D-day.
Through the long night, more than
100,000 men made their peace with God.
No longer orphans, Huxley's Harlots were at last...
... being given the chance to prove themselves.
The chance they'd worked for since boot camp.
We were to spearhead the invasion
that could tip the balance of the war.
Then the most intricate of all military operations...
... an amphibious invasion, was begun.
Every man on every ship was at his station.
Every man knew his job.
The assault teams formed up smoothly
and moved to rendezvous.
As H-hour approached,
the tension grew.
The men who had planned and lived
with Operation Granite on paper for months...
... had no choice but to wait.
The final seconds ticked off.
- Get Major Wellman.
- Yes, sir.
Put on Texas-5.
This is Texas-5.
Wilco. Out.
- Approaching the beach.
- All right, stand by to hit the beach!
Secure your gear.
When we hit it, take cover!
Red Beach. We pushed inland immediately.
The battalion was in trouble.
Our casualties were heavy.
The Japs were on a mountain, looking down.
They threw everything in the book.
And things that weren't in the book.
The enemy was staging a counterattack from our left.
Our right flank was threatened.
A shuttle service from ship to shore...
... poured men, guns, tanks and supplies in
behind us to secure our toehold before dark.
- Get off this beach! Let's go!
- Get off the beach!
All right, let's go!
Hit the deck!
Tell Regiment the enemy artillery fire is increasing.
Ohio, Ohio, this is Texas, over.
Enemy artillery fire is increasing,
- Tell 8-G, field is quick, charge thick.
- 2750, 6700.
Ohio, this is Texas.
Texas command post open 13-20.
Map coordinates 39-54.8.
- Hi, Mac.
- Hello, chief.
- How's it going, colonel?
- Not very good.
We've lost contact with the battalion on our right flank.
I told George Company to see
if they can get through to them.
Get on this generator!
- Give me George Company.
- George Company. Yes, sir.
Get the company commander.
- This is George-6.
- How are things up there?
- Can you hold?
- I don't think so.
We're receiving heavy mortar fire on our right.
All right.
Jim, let's get some mortar fire at TA-4606-yolk.
George Company will observe.
Heavy mortars, target area 4807-item.
- Japs still trying to tap our lines?
- Yes, but it won't do them no good.
They don't savvy Navajo. Get in touch with them.
See what the situation is.
Japs' buildup is increasing.
Let's get that back to the command ship.
Granite. Granite, this is Texas.
A message from Texas.
Red Beach, sir.
Huxley's battalion is isolated.
Yes, sir? Yes, sir.
Fox Company, Colonel Huxley.
Yes, Bill.
I'll be right there.
The Japs are pulling out of Garapan.
They'll hit that position anytime.
- I'm going over to Fox Company. Mac!
- Sir?
- Give me one of your boys.
- Hookens, take off.
- We'll cross here one at a time.
- Yes, sir.
Get a corpsman.
Get a corpsman!
Don't waste time.
Get to the command post...
...and tell Wellman he's got himself a battalion.
- I'll carry you out, sir.
- I gave you an order.
Now, get to it.
You're bleeding to death, sir!
Get out of here.
Yes, sir.
The colonel's badly hit.
He's ordered you to take over.
- Notify command.
- Where is he? Pedro, come on.
Corpsman! Corpsman!
- Kathy.
- Danny's dead!
- He's dead! I know he's dead!
- It's just a nightmare.
- No, he's dead. I know it! I saw him!
- Baby, you're just dreaming.
Everything will be all right.
It'll be all right.
If you like, I'll stay here with you.
All right.
High Pockets was dead, but his spirit
had crushed the counterattack.
"Sam Huxley!" had been our battle cry.
When the last shot had been fired,
they moved us to a rest camp.
We're leaving Saipan.
- We're going stateside.
- When?
About two days, I figure.
I think I'll go to the hospital and say goodbye to Andy.
Won't do no good. We was over there
this morning, but Andy threw us out.
Had a letter from Pat, but he wouldn't look at it...
...wouldn't even let us read it to him.
- Where's the letter?
- I got it right here.
Just like a grizzly bear.
- Hey, Mac.
- Hi, Charlie, how are you?
Remember that Japanese watch I had?
Somebody copped it.
- No kidding, when?
- Last night.
- Joe, how are you?
- Hi, Mac.
I can't hear you, Mac.
I'm a very sick boy.
The watch. The watch.
What, are you accusing me of something dishonest?
You gonna open up a hockshop when you get home?
How did that get there?
Hi, buddy. How's it going?
If you're preaching, pray with somebody else.
I've just come to say goodbye.
We're shipping out.
All right. Goodbye.
- You know you're way off base, don't you?
- Sure.
They'll get me a pretty, new leg.
You can do anything with
Chop down trees, plow fields.
Maybe I can even get a job in a sideshow.
You got a home and a wife.
A letter come from Pat today.
- Fellas said you wouldn't even read it.
- Leave her out of it. I got nothing.
They'll have you squared away
as good as new in no time.
They get me fixed up with a pretty, new leg,
then they rehabilitate me.
Knit doilies and make leather handbags.
Cut it out, will you?
They gonna give Spanish Joe new eardrums?
They going to put new life into Pedro and High Pockets?
Why don't you try doing a little living for them?
Get out of here.
No. I ain't going.
Not until I tell you something, kid.
You ain't got the guts to deserve to live.
As for High Pockets, don't even talk about him.
You ain't even in his league.
- I'm sorry, kid.
- Forget it.
- I'm sorry.
- Forget it, Mac.
- I'm sorry because it ain't true.
- Look...
Lots of luck when you get home.
Tell all the guys old Andy says goodbye.
- Will you do that?
- Yeah.
You have a son.
It's rather hard to say what Timmy looks like.
Poor little dear, what a horrible mixture he is.
New Zealand, American, Scotch and Swede.
He bellows like a Marine and eats like a lumberjack.
I think I'll keep him.
Andy, we know where you are.
Our prayers are with you
every second of every minute.
I know it'll be a long time
before you return to us, but remember...
...all that Timmy and I live for... the day that you'll come back forever."
Yes, Andy came home.
And those of us who were left,
we went home too.
I fell heir to the unpleasant job
of seeing the folks of those left behind. Pedro's mother. Jean Huxley. Marion's family.
The Maryland countryside was just the way
Danny had told me time and time again.
I seemed to be familiar with every landmark.
I was glad the journey was nearly over.
As we neared Baltimore, I remembered High Pockets'
"Make Marines out of them."
Well, we made Marines out of them.
And they led us on the long road back.
Next stop, Baltimore.
You're home.
It go to sleep on you?
Doc says it'll keep doing this
till they get all the shrapnel out.
- Sure you won't stay over a few days?
- No, thanks, kid.
I got to get up to Philly and see Ski's folks...
...then I got to report to Brooklyn Navy Yard Monday.
Thanks anyway.
- So long, Mac.
- Yeah.
So long, Marine.
Dad! Bud!
Marines on lwo Jima!
Read all about it.
Marines on lwo Jima!
All aboard!
For Danny Forrester, the war was over.
For me...
You know how us old-timers are.
There will always be boys to be trained
and battles to be won.
And like I
Politics and wars make strange bedfellows.