Battle Circus (1953)


“Nobody in this man’s army can get himself in so much trouble as you in so short a time.” – Lt. Col. Hilary Walters

Number of Times Seen – 1 (4 Nov 2019)

Brief Synopsis – During the Korean War, a doctor and his staff close to the battle lines must try and save as many soldiers as they can despite the various problems that keep arising.

My Take on it – This was a film that I was quite interested in seeing for two reasons.

The first one os because I’m trying to gain more knowledge of Humphrey Bogart’s resume and this was among his final performances just a few years before his death.

In addition, as soon as I saw the premise, it reminded me of both the movie and TV show MASH ad I was curious to see what they can do with such a premise.

Bogart is fine here, but he feels very miscast in this role and doesn’t manage to be powerful in this performance.

His chemistry with June Allyson isn’t that great ad it’s extremely difficult to actually believe that these characters are slowly falling in love as the story progresses.

Robert Altman was able to make this story even more poignant and fun 17 years later and it’s a pity that they weren’t able to make this film much more engaging.

Bottom Line – Pretty generic love story set during a war that fails to find a way to seem original and fresh. Bogart seem slightly miscast in this film and fails to make things more engaging and enjoyable. His chemistry with Allyson is borderline and doesn’t help make us believe their relationship at any of the stages that we get to see.  The same premise was much better handled nearly two decades later by Altman.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The film originally had a different title but the studio and the director thought that title would mislead audiences, so “Battle Circus” was instead chosen. The original title that was rejected was “MASH 66,” which referred to the same Mobile Army Surgical Hospital unit in the Korean War later made famous in both the film MASH (1970) and the TV series M*A*S*H (1972).(From IMDB)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (5/10)

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2 thoughts on “Battle Circus (1953)

  1. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1953 | MovieRob

  2. Pingback: Movies Reviewed Index A-Z | MovieRob

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