Synopsis by Hal Erickson
The highly variable Audie Murphy delivers his best screen performance as "himself" in Universal's To Hell and Back. Based on the star's autobiography, this is the story of how Murphy became America's most-decorated soldier during WW II. After dwelling a bit on Murphy's hard-scrabble Texas upbringing, the story moves ahead to 1942, when, as a teenager, Audie joined the army. Within a year, he was a member of the 7th Army, serving in North Africa, Italy, France and ultimately Germany and Austria. One by one, the members of Murphy's Company B are killed in the war, until only three men from the original company are left (the others appear at the finale as ghostly images, a standard visual cliché of 1950s war films). The bulk of the film is given over to Murphy's conspicuous acts of combat bravery, and his killing of 240 enemy soldiers. Highlighted by excellent battle sequences, To Hell and Back is a serviceable tribute to a most complex individual.
army, battlefield, military, patriotism, war, courage, Medal-of-Honor, soldier