They Were Expendable

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Released 1999

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Director:
John Ford
Released:
1999
Rating:
Not Available

They Were Expendable is a 1945 war drama directed by John Ford. The film is based on a book by William L. White about the Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron Three. This PT unit was involved in defending the Philippines against Japanese invasion during the Battle of the Philippines in World War II. The film begins with Lt. J.G. "Rusty" Ryan (John Wayne) writing a heated letter to his superiors requesting a transfer from his PT unit to a destroyer boat. He is requesting the transfer because he is frustrated with his superior's refusal to recognize the small PT boats as practical infantry naval craft. Before Rusty has a chance to turn in his request for a transfer, Pearl Harbor is attacked and the Navy is on high alert. As a result of intense fighting, Rusty's superiors have no choice but to use the PT units. Rusty entrusts the help of Lt. John Brickley (Robert Montgomery), and the two men are excited to prove that the PT units can be viable infantry naval crafts. Will Rusty and John be successful, or were their superiors right all along?

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    Themes

    Psychological, Politics, Historical, Classics