Go for Broke
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Platform: DVD MOVIE Publisher: ALPHA VIDEO Packaging: DVD STYLE BOX A bigoted Texan Lieutenant Michael Grayson (Van Johnson) is assigned to command the U.S. 442nd Regimental Combat Team during World War II. Learning that the regiment is composed entirely of Japanese-American volunteers he immediately requests a transfer. Suspicious and distrustful of his troops the Lieutenant finds it hard to believe that "Japs" are fit to be American soldiers.Denied his transfer the unhappy commander and his regiment ship out to the raging battlefields of Europe. "Go For Broke" is the motto of the 442nd and the troops' daring and bravery under fire prove it to be well-deserved. Lt. Grayson's prejudices gradually turn to respect and admiration as his heroic subordinates aquit themselves with valor and a clear determination to go above and beyond the call of duty. Taking on heavy casualties in carrying out its missions the 442nd was one of the U.S. Army's most decorated infantry regiments during WWII. Many of the actual veterans of the celebrated fighting unit play themselves in Go For Broke. Appearing in more than 100 films during his long career Van Johnson became one of America's top war film heroes during the 1940s and 1950s. In addition to Go For Broke popular WWII-inspired movies include The White Cliffs of Dover (1944) Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo (1944) Command Decision (1948) Battleground (1949) and the Oscar-nominated film The Caine Mutiny (1954) one of his most memorable starring roles. Starring: Van JohnsonDirected by: Robert Pirosh DVD Details: Run Time: 90 minutesNumber of Discs: 1Originally Released in 1951Black & WhiteNo region encoding; For global distribution.
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My father was an American Infantry officer during WWII and served from the WWII U.S. Army formation at the "Great Louisiana Maneuvers" in the summer of 1941 through all of the North African campaign, then Sicily, and all the way up Italy to the German surrender in May 1945. I was raised on stories of the war, and the 442nd's achievements were one of those stories. Dad never understood prejudice in any form but especially prejudice against men who were part of the same fighting force and most especially against men who showed themselves so bravely. As he told me early on and in a very respectful voice, "The Nisei had the highest level of purple hearts and awards for bravery of any unit in the army." Before the 442nd left Italy enroute to France [and saving the "Lost Battalion"], there was an awards ceremony for them in northern Italy. I have a couple photos of that ceremony as my father proudly represented U.S. Fifth Army there. But I'm attaching another photo of the 442nd/100th Btn.in Italy--a photo of the unit being reviewed by then Secretary of the Navy James Forrestal with Gen. Mark Clark on the left and another officer--in helmet and probably the 442nd commander. I add the photo here because I believe the people who see the film and read the review comments would enjoy it. Sincerely, Heydon Buchanan
'Go For Broke" (released in 1951, directed by Robert Pirosh) is most certainly one of those deeply historically-resonant films that keeps (at least) part of this essential memory alive = the Story of the incredibly Brave and unquestionably Loyal patriots of Japanese-American heritage who wholeheartedly volunteered to defend American principles of democracy and self-determination throughout the bloody-battlefields of Europe fighting tooth-and-nail against the Axis Powers led by Nazi Germany (fighting thru Italy, France and Germany) as part of both the "100th Battalion" and the "442nd Regiment" (which actually join-forces in this film).
I was really happy to see that AMAZON Video is offering the original "Go For Broke" film for a reasonable price,,,, and I recently rewatched this (although I had seen it a couple times before, a few years back). The Amazon picture quality is relatively-good considering the age of source-materials (but probably not remastered),,,,,, "Go For Broke" is also the kind of priceless Hollywood film that really deserves a full-blown BluRay package someday (with as many interviews and archival footage that they could possibly pack-in!)...... but the main thing is that on AMAZON video, people will at least have the chance to see this early attempt by Hollywood (circa1951) to tell an essential true-story about exceptional courage & sacrifice in defense of democratic principles by the rock-solid Japanese American patriots comprising the '100th Battalion' and '442 Regiment' (receiving nearly 10,000 Purple-Hearts for bravery in combat all told roughly 30,000 Japanese Americans served the US military during WWII, even while many of their family members were still held in internment camps on the West-Coast and elsewhere...... true-stories that should not ever be forgotten).
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