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American Experience: Bataan Rescue
American Experience Bataan Rescue
Actors: David McCullough, David Ogden Stiers, Joe Morton, Liev Schreiber, Linda Hunt
Genres: Television, Educational, Documentary, Mystery & Suspense, Military & War
NR     2003     1hr 0min

In late 1941, tens of thousands of American and Filipino soldiers fought a desperate battle to defend the Bataan peninsula in the Philippines from the Japanese. When they lost, they were marched to prison camps in swelteri...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: David McCullough, David Ogden Stiers, Joe Morton, Liev Schreiber, Linda Hunt
Creators: Katy Mostoller, Michael Rossi, Rocky Collins, Tracy Heather Strain, Henry Hampton
Genres: Television, Educational, Documentary, Mystery & Suspense, Military & War
Sub-Genres: Television, Educational, Biography, Military & War, Mystery & Suspense, Military & War
Studio: Pbs (Direct)
Format: DVD - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 07/29/2003
Original Release Date: 04/18/2005
Theatrical Release Date: 04/18/2005
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 1hr 0min
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 3
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Great (true) story!
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Fantastic! The story of the ALL the men, the prisoners, rescuers, and locals who aided them, is so moving. I read the book this was based on and went from shock and horror to tears over their bravery. By accident I saw this on TV and found it to be just as good. It was also nice to put faces to the names I had read about. Amazing stories of courage. An outstanding story many have never heard about. Well worth it!"
A Progam That Brings "Ghost Soldiers" to Life
M | California USA | 06/28/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This American Experience episode puts faces to all the heroes involved in the liberation of the Cabanatuan POW Camp. It is based on Hampton Sides' excellent account, "Ghost Soldiers", and includes an extensive interview with Sides, along with a number of Rangers and POWS who were featured in the book. There are many newsreels, captured Japanese POW camp footage, and a compelling re-enactment of the rescue provided. Some of the actual footage shot by Signal Corps staff who accompanied the Ranger and Scout units on their mission is also included. Two making-of featurettes that last about 10 minutes each, a timeline, and information/links on the extensive web pages for this PBS program are the extent of the special features, but enjoyable nonetheless.

This program is only 60 minutes long and provides just a basic outline of the entire POW rescue story. For example, very little in the program is devoted to the heroic actions of numerous Filipino guerrillas and civilians involved in this rescue, although their contributions were incredibly significant. For those intrigued and inspired by what they see in this program, you are encouraged to read the book "Ghost Soldiers", which provides far more detail and a much better depiction of this dramatic event. Until Ghost Soldiers-the motion picture is released, this is an excellent companion DVD to the actual book. "Saving Private Ryan" cannot hold a candle to this true story."
Rangers To The Rescue!
M | 05/31/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Not to sound overly patriotic, but this story is what American heroism is all about! This video shows the interviews with the US veterans who survived the horrific Bataan Death March only to find themselves in the hell of Japanese Prison Camps. I watched with heartfelt emotion as these brave men told their story. The plan to rescue them was carried out by extremely brave US Army Rangers and their allies in the Phillipines. This story is definitely worth listening to! You will not be dissappointed."
Newspaper reviews
M | 07/27/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"TV Guide "Top Picks": "Hollywood couldn't have fashioned a bolder or more heroic World War II story."The Boston Globe: "Outstanding...the tale is extraordinary, and producer and writer David Axelrod does it justice."Orlando Sentinel: "A riveting American Experience...first-rate...concise, straightforward and stirring-the perfect way to follow the Fourth of July weekend."The Oregonian: "a finely balanced account."The Globe and Mail (Toronto): "A solid hour of riveting and emotional stories, a far cry from the other `reality' programs on other channels tonight."Detroit Free Press: "history comes alive dramatically...a profile in extraordinary courage.""