7.5/10
6,058
78 user 23 critic

Battleground (1949)

Approved | | Action, Drama, History | 20 January 1950 (USA)
True tale about a squad of the 101st Airborne Division coping with being trapped by the Nazis in the besieged city of Bastogne, Belgium during the Battle of the Bulge in December of 1944.

Director:

William A. Wellman

Writer:

Robert Pirosh (story and screenplay)
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Won 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Van Johnson ... Holley
John Hodiak ... Jarvess
Ricardo Montalban ... Roderigues
George Murphy ... 'Pop' Stazak
Marshall Thompson ... Jim Layton
Jerome Courtland ... Abner Spudler
Don Taylor ... Standiferd
Bruce Cowling ... Wolowicz
James Whitmore ... Kinnie
Douglas Fowley ... 'Kipp' Kippton
Leon Ames ... The Chaplain
Herbert Anderson ... Hansan (as Guy Anderson)
Thomas E. Breen Thomas E. Breen ... Doc
Denise Darcel ... Denise
Richard Jaeckel ... Bettis
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Storyline

We follow a band of American soldiers as they engage the Germans in a snowy, foggy winter near Bastogne in World War II. They're low on fuel, rations, and ammunition; the Germans are constantly encouraging their surrender via radio and leaflets, and most importantly, the pervasive thick fog makes movement and identification difficult and prevents their relief by Allied air support. This film focuses much more on the psychology and morale of the soldiers than on action footage and heroics. Written by Michael C. Berch <mcb@postmodern.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The First Great Picture Of The Second World War ! See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | History | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French | German

Release Date:

20 January 1950 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bastogne See more »

Filming Locations:

Oregon, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,631,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$10,293,960

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$13,666,420
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In an interview released shortly after the film came out, James Whitmore said that he based his appearance and his attitude partly on Bill Mauldin's famous "Willie and Joe" cartoons that appeared in the "Stars and Stripes" newspaper, popular with servicemen during World War II. See more »

Goofs

Towards the end of the movie, one of the troopers takes out a grenade and places it next to his foxhole with the bottom facing towards the camera. Even though the editors made a smear mark on the film in an obvious attempt to hide it, you can plainly see that the genuine war surplus grenade had a large hole drilled its bottom. See more »

Quotes

Pvt. Donald Jarvess: Only one thing gets me. When you work on a newspaper, I'd get those wire releases and know I was the first person in town who had the news, all the news. I guarantee you my wife knows what's going on in Bastogne. All I know is what's going on in the 2nd squad of the 3rd platoon of I company.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Also available in a computer colorized version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Lianna (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

Santa Claus is Comin' to Town
(uncredited)
Written by J. Fred Coots and Haven Gillespie
Sung by the soldiers
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Terrific Classic About WWII
24 January 2009 | by brownsfan337See all my reviews

I watched this movie all the time with my Grandpa growing up. He was a vet of the US Army in the Pacific and he told me that this was the only movie where a M-1 rifle and artillery actually sounded real. That is because both were the real sounds they made. The artillery was actually recorded during the war and used in the film.

The characters you can connect with. The circumstances were anything but ideal to fight a war in. You see Layton grow into a vet before your eyes. You see men scared, terrified, and there for each other. Until "Band of Brothers" came out this was my favorite flick about WWII, and it's definitely the best of the "old school" war movies.


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