Bombs Over Burma

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Bombs Over Burma
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Joseph H. Lewis[1]
Produced by Arthur Alexander
Alfred Stern
Written by Joseph H. Lewis
George Wellington Pardy
Milton Raison (story)
Starring Anna May Wong
Music by Lee Zahler
Cinematography Robert E. Cline
Edited by Charles Henkel Jr.
Distributed by Producers Releasing Corporation
Release date
  • June 5, 1942 (1942-06-05)
Running time
65 minutes
Country United States
Language English

Bombs Over Burma (AKA The Devil's Sister), based on a story by Milton Raison, is a 1942 American war film.[2] To depict the Chinese character faithfully, the star, Anna May Wong and other characters, speak Mandarin in the first few minutes of the film.[3]


In 1942, Chinese guerrillas fighting for the Allied cause in Burma during World War II are helping to build a road. During the construction of a military supply road like the Burma Road and Ledo Road, the project is sabotaged by an English nobleman who is a German agent.

Using a scientific device, the English nobleman is instrumental in the coordination of a Japanese air attack on supply trucks attempting to cross a key bridge. A Chinese school teacher (Anna May Wong) reveals the schemes of the traitor, and brings about his destruction at the hands of Chinese peasants armed with picks and shovels.


As appearing in Bombs Over Burma, (main roles and screen credits identified):[4]


Lack of an adequate budget and a two-week shooting schedule hampered the production, limiting Bombs Over Burma to "B-fare".[5][6]


Production values doomed Bombs Over Burma both at the box office and with critics. The review in The New York Times succinctly called it a "dud", loaded with stock shots, even recognizable "California architecture."[7] Later reviews such as that of Leonard Maltin, noted that the film was an "... interesting if failed attempt to make a hard-hitting, topical film ... Director/cowriter Lewis' visual flair can't save a talky, pedestrian script. Wong comes off well, as usual."[8]


Alpha Video released the film on region-1 DVD on June 28, 2005.[9]


  1. ^ Bombs Over Burma (1942) on Internet Movie Database
  2. ^ Evans 2000, p. 30.
  3. ^ Leong 2005, p. 191.
  4. ^ "Credits: Bombs Over Burma (1942)." Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved: May 7, 2012.
  5. ^ Leong 2005, p. 101.
  6. ^ Erickson, Hal. "Bombs Over Burma." Archived April 26, 2006, at the Wayback Machine. Allmovie. Retrieved: March 22, 2012.
  7. ^ T.S. "Movie Review: Bombs Over Burma (1942)." The New York Times, August 10, 1942.
  8. ^ "Leonard Maltin Film Review: Bombs Over Burma (1942)." Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved: May 7, 2012.
  9. ^ "Bombs Over Burma." Retrieved: March 22, 2012.
  • Evans, Alun. Brassey's Guide to War Films. Dulles, Virginia: Potomac Books, 2000. ISBN 1-57488-263-5.
  • Leong, Karen J. The China Mystique: Pearl S. Buck, Anna May Wong, Mayling Soong, and the Transformation of American Orientalism. Berkeley, California: University of California Press, 2005. ISBN 0-5202-4422-2.
  • Taves, Brian. Joseph H. Lewis, Anna May Wong, and Bombs Over Burma. In Gary Rhodes, ed. The Films of Joseph H. Lewis. Detroit, Michigan: Wayne State University Press, 2012. ISBN 978-0814334621.

External links[edit]