Synopsis by Hal Erickson
Red Ball Express deals with the little-known activities of the U.S. Army Transportation Corps during WW II. It so happened that many of the Corps' most courageous drivers were black men, who otherwise would have been denied an opportunity for combat duty. Sidney Poitier plays Corporal Andrew Robinson, who resents his second-class-citizen status and chafes at the orders issued by his white commanding officer Lt. Chick Campbell (Jeff Chandler). Meanwhile, Campbell has his own cross to bear in the form of relentlessly hostile sergeant Ernest Kalek (Alex Nicol). All differences are conveniently forgotten in the climactic euphoria of providing ammunition for General Patton's tanks during the Allied push to Paris in 1944. Considered just another war picture in 1952, Red Ball Express has since taken on added stature by virtue of the presence of actor Sidney Poitier and director Budd Boetticher.
army, Black [race], driver, race-relations, sergeant, war, fuel