Back to Bataan

Synopsis: The US Army's defense of its Philippines colony and the allied Malay countries/colonies behind it counted on its island fortress of Corregidor on Luzon -and a few others- but loses it in the 6 May 1942 Japanese combined forces attack. Colonel Joseph Madden is among the escaping survivors who are ordered by general Douglas McArthur to organize a guerrilla. As he finds many native Filipinos inclined to resist the occupier's vision of returning to the South Asian fold under a paternalistic empire which doesn't hesitate to 'spank the unruly', but is mainly civilian, unprepared, inept in military matters, Madden appeals to the legendary anti-US freedom fighter Andres Bonifácio's homonymous grandson Captain Andrés Bonifácio, who is luckily rescued from a POW dead march, to inspire the resistance -once his own fighting spirit is rekindled- with him in a still very unsure war, retaliated by bloody, ten to one repression. When the Japanese realize the people side against them, they stage fake i
Genre: Drama, War
Director(s): Edward Dmytryk
Production: Turner Home Entertainment
95 min

Okay, you guys, the Yanks are here.

Don't go! It's a Jap trick!

Come on! You've been here three years!

Get out of here! Head for the main gate.

- Yanks!

- Take him.

Come on, guys!

Come on, fellows, get to the main gate.

Get to the main gate, boys.

Hurry up. Come on, fellows.

Go the main gate, will you?

Come on, the main gate.

Right this way. Come on, boys.

Get over to the main gate.

- Hurry up!

- Get to the main gate, fellows.

Keep the men under cover. Come on.

- Here they come, Captain.

- Hurry.

Come on, men. Hurry it up.

Keep moving, men. Hurry it up.

Come on. Hurry it up.

We'll send a man back

as soon as we're in the clear.

- Okay, Captain. We'll take care of them.

- Right.

Come on, give that man a hand, will you?

- That's the first round.

- They'll be back.

- Captain.

- Yeah?

- It's all clear, you can withdraw now.

- Good.

- Jack.

- Yes, sir?

We're pulling out.

Come on.

The men you are about to see...

are actual survivors

of three terrible years...

in the Jap prison camp at Cabanatuan.

For two weeks, Filipino troops have held

their front on Bataan without relief.

And for 10 days and 10 nights, they have

been withstanding the unceasing attacks...

of Gen. Homma 's 200,000 men.

Don't we know it?

Why do you fight? This is not your war.

America brought you into it.

For every American who dies on Bataan,

seven Filipinos shed their blood.

America has abandoned you.

General, what do you think

our chances are that...

That help is on its way?

Nothing we can bet on.

What good is liberty to the dead?

Filipinos, why do you fight?

Look toward the sea.

Your liberators come to restore

your homes and your loved ones.

Filipinos, look toward the sea.

Scotty, any word

on the concentration on our left?

Nothing to indicate one. But there's

time for aerial reconnaissance before dark.

Yes, we got time, all right.

But no air corps. It burned out a bearing.

- Get Col. Madden.

- Yes, sir.

Filipinos, why are you rotting in foxholes?

You have no arms.

You're dying by the thousands of malaria.

- Your homes are being destroyed.

- Col. Madden.

- Headquarters on the phone.

- Lay down your guns.

Spare your homeland.

Col. Madden speaking.

They're attacking about every hour, sir,

as usual.

Joe, something may be pulled

against your end of the line.

Put that company

of Philippine Scouts on alert...

but don't commit them to action

unless the situation becomes desperate.

- What's up, sir?

- I wish I knew, Joe.

- Where's Capt. Bonifacio?

- He went to the cliffs, sir.

- Colonel, sir.

- Yes?

That woman on the radio,

she was his sweetheart, sir.

I know.

- Roberts.

- Yes, sir.

I'm going to the cliffs.

I'll be gone 10 minutes.

- Take over.

- Yes, sir.

Hello, Andrs.

- Just passing by, I suppose.

- No, I want to talk to you.

Won't you make yourself at home?

- Cigarette?

- Thanks.

I'm sorry I can't offer anything better

than these crude native cigarettes.

That's all right.

I've been smoking them for years.

- Find them to my taste.

- Good.

You'll forgive me

if I don't pour you a martini...

- Stop acting like a schoolboy.

- What do you mean schoolboy?

Only a schoolboy would expose himself

and his men like you did today.

I know it's tough when the woman

you love goes over to the enemy...

- but you can't let...

- It's none of your business.

That's right. But risking the lives

of these men is my business.

Keep it up and you'll have

the whole company wiped out.

This is a dirty war we're fighting.

We've got to fight it the right way.

- What do you want me to do?

- I want you to act like a soldier.

Remember you're in command

of a company of men.

You've got the responsibility

of their lives in your hands.

What is it, Bernessa?

Maj. McKinley, sir, battalion reports.

Japs are making mass attack, sir.

Get back to your company.

Hold them on the alert.

And don't do anything

until you get orders, understand?

Yes, sir.

By the way, for this morning's action,

I'm recommending you for the DSC.

- Colonel, sir.

- Yes, Bernessa?

Capt. Bonifacio, how is it with him?

- Okay. We'll have to keep an eye on him.

- Yes, sir.

Get McKinley on the wire.

How much ammunition

do they think we've got?

Maj. McKinley speaking.

Madden speaking. What are you guys

celebrating down there, New Year's?

- That's real ammunition you're shooting.

- That's real Japs we're shooting at.

At the rate you're going, you'll use up

our nine-day supply in two hours.

They're not coming over at the usual rate.

They're coming in waves.

McKinley, there aren't that many Japs.

Sir, I suggest you come down

and see for yourself.

- Take over, Roberts.

- Yes, sir.

I am going to see for myself.

See what I mean, sir?

They're actually bridging that barbed wire

with their bodies.

A bridge of dead.

- Are you all right, sir?

- I'm all right.

Didn't know there were that many Japs.

- Where's McKinley?

- Second one got him, sir.

Let's get out of here!

- How goes it, Felipe?

- Okay, Colonel.


This is your countrywoman

Dolici Dalgado speaking to you.

I speak to you from my heart.

Must America have the last drop

of your blood? Lay down your guns.

The empire of Japan is waiting

to welcome you in...

Take it easy! We don't have ammunition

to waste on loudspeakers. Get down.

Peace, prosperity, and freedom await you

as soon as this war ends.

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Ben Barzman

Ben Barzman (October 12, 1910 – December 15, 1989) was a Canadian journalist, screenwriter, and novelist, blacklisted during the McCarthy Era and best known for his screenplays for the films Back to Bataan (1945), El Cid (1961), and The Blue Max (1966). more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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