Between Heaven And Hell
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If Hollywood cannot suppress a great concept and turn it into drivel before a film gets made, they often will find a way to do it after it has been released. Orson Welles learned this the hard way making Citizen Kane to his great pain, and could never get quite enough funding for any big film after that.
This is no Citizen Kane, nor will Robert Wagner ever, ever, be confused with Orson Welles. On the other hand, to call him un-charismatic?!? Not to a whole generation of girls in the 50's and 60's, including my sweetie. Not to mention to a whole generation of guys who wanted to be like him.
As a war film, it is way above the cut and cannot be written off too easily after viewing. I esteem it as much as Hell Is For Heroes with Steve McQueen or Attack! with Jack Palance. Films that stood out from the fodder, and were rarely duplicated if ever. Why this one never got respect, I am too young to have heard, and at this point, there is a whole new generation who will get to see, and perhaps appreciate it.
I saw this film many years ago on TV and I never quite forgot it, for many reasons, and I have been dying to see it released on DVD.
The other reviews on this site give a decent summation of the plot, but the truth of the film goes deeper. Buddy Ebson as a sharecropper gives a slyly informed humanity to people we all have driven by when we saw them (barely) working in the fields, or else cleaning our offices, or in our kitchens.
Broderick Crawford so typifies the insanity of war, where we can find ourselve in situations without a rulebook, yet not knowing the rules means death.Read more ›
The story begins "in medias res" with a demoted sergeant being transferred to a distant post in the Pacific Theatre in WWII. Robert Wagner plays this soldier from the South named Sam Gifford who must now rejoin the rank and file. Under the command of a sadistic captain, Gifford recalls his past as a wealthy landowner and his treatment of his sharecroppers. He then recalls the events of his heroism and demotion. Through all of this, he learns that the people he mistreated back home are just as capable of heroism and that he has been wrong.
Buddy Ebsen, from "The Beverly Hillbillies," plays a part in this film, and I believe he made the movie enjoyable. He wasn't comic relief, but played the stout-hearted sharecropper that truly showed Gifford the error of his ways.
The part of the sadistic captain doesn't seem to fit at first, but watch the whole movie, and his place and his story will make sense.
A fairly good movie, but the flashbacks seem a bit excessive. They are necessary, but still seem a bit much where they are.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I first saw this movie when I was a kid and now own it. Robert was great as well as Brodrick Crawford and Buddy Ebsen. Some may not like but I sure did with good battle scenes.Published 3 months ago by Steve
Saw part of "Between Heaven and Hell" (with Robert Wagner's character maturing during WWII in the Pacific) recently on a TV movie channel and it reminded me of some scenes... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Gerry Say
This is a good story. This has action and a great back story to the main character.Published 5 months ago by Spencer
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