A very unusual anti-war war film co-scripted by an American and a Japanese. It’s a sad story about the slender thread of human tolerance and understanding, and how easily it can be tied and snapped again.
It’s 1944 and a crippled C-47 transport plane carrying US Marines crash lands on a remote coral island in the Pacific which is held by a platoon of the Japanese Imperial Army, who are also cut off from their command.
After rival snipers have whittled both sides down to a handful of men, the leaders, Kuroki (Tatsuya Mihashi) and Bourke (Clint Walker) launch an uneasy truce.
The men enjoy a few days of blissful relaxation from war and even come to respect one another as men – but the flashpoint to violence is never far away.
Frank Sinatra – who also directs in his only film director role – takes a subsidiary role as the island’s “doctor”, Francis Maloney. His son, Richard, also appears.
Lance Cpl. Hirano
Lead Pvt. Ando
Chief Pharmacist Mate Francis Maloney
Capt. Dennis Bourke
2nd Lt. Blair
Air Crewman Keller
John Howard Young