Battle Cry (film)

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Battle Cry
Battle Cry DVD cover.jpeg
Battle Cry DVD cover
Directed by Raoul Walsh
Produced by Jack L. Warner
Written by Leon Uris
Narrated by James Whittmore
Music by Max Steiner
Cinematography Sidney Hickox
Edited by William H. Ziegler
Distributed by Warner Bros.
Release date
  • February 2, 1955 (1955-02-02)
Running time
149 minutes
Country United States
Language English, Navajo, Japanese
Box office $8 million (US/ Canada rentals)[1]

Battle Cry is a 1955 CinemaScope film, starring Van Heflin, Aldo Ray, James Whitmore, Tab Hunter, Anne Francis, Dorothy Malone, Raymond Massey, and Mona Freeman. The movie is based on the novel by former Marine Leon Uris, who also wrote the screenplay, and was produced and directed by Raoul Walsh. The film was shot at Camp Pendleton, California and featured a large amount of cooperation from the United States Marine Corps.


The film is a drama set in World War II, following a group of United States Marines from boot camp to combat as members of the Communications Platoon, 6th Marines, 2d Marine Division. It depicts the forming of comradeships and the relentless training which the battalion, led by Major "High Pockets" Huxley, has to undergo. In two battles (Guadalcanal and Tarawa), the battalion is used only for mop-up duties, but after an out-of-line argument between "High Pockets" and the commanding general, they are used as lead battalion in the Battle of Saipan, suffering heavy casualties as they land on the exposed left flank of Red Beach. Huxley is killed and as they watch his body being carried off the field his grim-faced men fix bayonets ready to meet a Japanese counter-attack.

Besides describing the battalion's everyday activities, the movie also details the private lives of three of the Marines. On military rest and relaxation ("R and R") in New Zealand, Andy Hookens falls in love with Pat Rogers, the widow of a New Zealand soldier killed at El Alamein. Pat becomes pregnant and they marry. Andy is tempted to desert in order to be with his wife and baby, but Pat persuades him that their lives would be impossible as fugitives and he goes back to his ship. Andy loses a leg on Saipan and speaks bitterly of a useless future, but the Master Technical Sergeant, Mac, convinces him he is wrong and at the end of the movie Andy returns to his wife and child on her family's New Zealand farm. During training, Danny Forrester has an affair with an older woman, Mrs Yarborough, the USO manager. He realises there is no future in the relationship and breaks it off, to Mrs Yarborough's distress. While on furlough he marries his sweetheart Kathy. After being wounded on Saipan he is reunited with his wife.



Battle Cry received an Academy Award nomination for Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture by composer Max Steiner.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ 'The Top Box-Office Hits of 1955', Variety Weekly, January 25, 1956
  2. ^ The actor then adopted his character's name as his stage name.

External links[edit]