Cinema: The Devil's Brigade

Last year it was The Dirty Dozen. This year it is the filthy 1,500, a mixed bag of World War II regimental rejects who hate the brass en masse. As in Dozen, they are given a last chance to shape up or ship out. Under the brutal direction of their hard-nosed but inexperienced commander (William Holden), they decide that valor is the better part of discretion, and begin playing soldiers in earnest.

After the drilling comes the killing. While artillery shells resound overhead, the men—now called "The Devil's Brigade" by fearful Germans—begin their assault on a steep mountain in Italy, the peak...

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