Hell in the Pacific (Blu-ray)
Out of violence, compassion. Out of suspicion, trust. Out of hell, hope.
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Blu-ray Disc Features:
- Rated: G
- Run Time: 1 hours, 43 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: June 27, 2017
- Originally Released: 1968
- Label: KL Studio Classics
- Encoding: Region A
Performers, Cast and Crew:
|Starring||Lee Marvin & Toshirô Mifune|
|Directed by||John Boorman|
|Edited by||Thomas Stanford|
|Screenplay by||Eric Bercovici & Alexander Jacobs|
|Composition by||Lalo Schifrin|
|Story by||Reuben Bercovitch|
|Produced by||Reuben Bercovitch|
|Director of Photography:||Conrad L. Hall|
Hell In The Pacific is a true underseen classic featuring brave work from all the major craftsmen involved and offering much food for thought even today. Full Review
Rating: 3/5 -- Uneven but fascinating character study from John Boorman.
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
The distillate of Boorman's metaphysical-elemental conflicts Full Review
Rating: 2/4 -- The acting is acceptable but is as extravagant as the script, and Boorman's direction is repetitive and ponderous, beating that single antiwar theme to death long before the adversaries do. Full Review
Unsettling stuff, bolstered by a boldly bleak finale. Full Review
Rating: 5/5 -- Two WWII enemies face off, but then depend on each other. Fascinating Boorman.
Kansas City Kansan
Intriguing but finally dissatisfying. Full Review
Director John Boorman's typical bravado is somewhat muted in this WWII parable. Set in the Pacific in 1944, the film focuses on two combatants stranded on the same barren atoll: a Japanese naval officer (Toshirô Mifune) and a U.S. marine pilot (Lee Marvin). At first the two men warily stalk each other, both revealing something by refusing to kill the other when the opportunity arises. At length the Japanese officer captures and harnesses the American, who ultimately escapes, returns, and ties up his opponent. The American finally releases his prisoner as both men grasp the pointlessness of their behavior, and a tacit truce develops between them, since neither can understand the other's language. After some scenes of mutually incomprehensible yelling and a bit of water torture, the Japanese man begins building a raft. The American's initial derision is replaced by an awareness that his cooperation would likely speed their departure and increase their odds of survival. In what is virtually a silent film, Boorman invokes his recurring "man against nature" theme, here reconfigured as a plea for human solidarity. Marvin is excellent, while Mifune is a virtuoso of the kind of physical acting the film requires, and Conrad Hall's camerawork does justice to the spectacular beauty of the Micronesian islands.
Two soldiers--one American and the other Japanese--find themselves stranded on a deserted isle during World War II. Their deeply embedded prejudices and the antagonisms get a cathartic release as the pair fight, and eventually cooperate, to escape the remote rock.
- Theatrical release: December 18, 1968.
- Shot on locations on Koror and other Palau islands of Micronesia.
- Director John Boorman had paired with actor Lee Marvin for POINT BLANK in the previous year.
- Toshirô Mifune, one of Japan's greatest actors, appears in many of director Akira Kurosawa's most celebrated films, including RASHOMON, THE SEVEN SAMURAI, THRONE OF BLOOD, and YOJIMBO.
- Mifune had learned English two years prior to this film for his role in director John Frankenheimer's GRAND PRIX.