Back To Bataan The US Army’s defense of its Philippines colony and the allied Malay countries/colonies behind it counted on its island fortress of Corregidor on Luzon -and a few others- but loses it in the 6 May 1942 Japanese combined forces attack. Colonel Joseph Madden is among the escaping survivors who are ordered by general Douglas McArthur to organize a guerrilla. As he finds many native Filipinos inclined to resist the occupier’s vision of returning to the South Asian fold under a paternalistic empire which doesn’t hesitate to ‘spank the unruly’, but is mainly civilian, unprepared, inept in military matters, Madden appeals to the legendary anti-US freedom fighter Andres Bonifácio’s homonymous grandson Captain Andrés Bonifácio, who is luckily rescued from a POW dead march, to inspire the resistance -once his own fighting spirit is rekindled- with him in a still very unsure war, retaliated by bloody, ten to one repression.
Back To Bataan This is the story of the suffering of the people of the Phillippines under the Japanese invaders during World War 2. There are several scenes depicting the savagery of the Japanese toward the Filipinos because they had embraced the American way of life. The Japanese hanged, beheaded, raped, beat and tortured hundreds of thousands of Filipino citizens. Enough of that sort of treatment is shown to let the viewer know why the Americans wanted to liberate the Phillippines. But the Director doesn’t shove too much of that sort of thing in your face. There is savagery of another sort – combat and lots of it in this film. John Wayne is the big star of the film, with Anthony Quinn starring also. I agree with another reviewer that a Filipino should have been cast in Mr. Quinn’s role. However, Quinn did a very good job, as did most of the remainder of the cast. Any John Wayne war film is going to have lots of action and this one doesn’t disappoint. Overall, this is a good one!