The Big Red One

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Lorimar productions Released 1980

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Movie Summary

Director:
Samuel Fuller
Released:
1980
Rating:
PG
The Big Red One is a 1980 war film directed by Samuel Fuller. The film was based on some of the events that occurred during World War II, as witnessed by Fuller during his experiences as a part of the United States First Infantry Position, also known as "The Big Red One". The film is focused on a sergeant in the US First Infantry (Lee Miller), as he leads his squad through different parts of the war. The Big Red One is shown through a series of flashbacks from the perspectives of the sergeant and his men as they go through a series of battles, special attention is paid to the events surrounding the Normandy D-Day assault. A major theme of the film is the difference between killing and murder. This theme is first presented when the film opens and shows the sergeant kill an approaching German soldier who attempts to surrender. The theme is seen again when a similar situation occurs, but this time, as soon as he realizes the war has ended, he and his men attempt to revive the man. Character Private Griff (Mark Hamill) balances the sergeant's willingness to kill surrendering enemies by refusing to do so himself.moreless

Metacritic Score

  • 90

    Los Angeles Times Kevin Crust

    Marvin's performance, much enhanced by "The Reconstruction," is a marvel.

  • 80

    The New York Times Dana Stevens

    The Big Red One, for all its uncompromising brutality, is viscerally, angrily alive. Fuller was lucky to survive the war. It is our good fortune that this film, a tribute to his lu...

  • 80

    The New York Times Vincent Canby

    The Big Red One, for all its uncompromising brutality, is viscerally, angrily alive. Fuller was lucky to survive the war. It is our good fortune that this film, a tribute to his lu...

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