I first saw “Merrill’s Marauders” in 1962 at the Avalon theater in Chicago. My best friend, Bob Greenberg, and I were ushers at the time.
The story is true. It’s about the The 5307th Composite Unit (Provisional), more commonly known as Merrill’s Marauders after its commanding officer, Brig. Gen. Frank Merrill, a regiment sized unit created and trained for long range penetration of Japanese lines in Burma during World War II.
At the time, I was not impressed with the movie. Now, fifty years later, I watched the movie again on TCM and changed my opinion. I still think the dialogue is corny and the soundtrack is dated, but it is a good story about a force of 2,750 soldiers who March 750 miles to capture the Japanese-held Burmese town of Myitkyina . By the time the town fell, only 130 officers and men of the original 2,750 were fit for duty.
It’s a good movie, starring Jeff Chandler and Ty Hardin. I recommend it and give it four stars out of five.