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Desperate Journey

(1942 b 108')

En: 6 Ed: 5

Five RAF men are shot down in Poland but manage to escape and do damage in Berlin on their way back to England.

A man blows up a railroad; he is shot but releases a carrier pigeon. The British Royal Air Force sends a plane to bomb the Polish railway intersection. The pilot tells co-pilot Terry Forbes (Errol Flynn) to wait for a break in the clouds. A German fighter attacks, and they shoot it down. Bombardier Johnny Hammond (Ronald Reagan) hits the targets, but anti-aircraft fire hits their plane. Terry crash-lands in a forest. They help the injured and hide from soldiers. The pilot dies, and they are captured. Major Otto Baumeister (Raymond Massey) demands the names of Lloyd Hollis (Ronald Sinclair), Johnny, Jed Forrest (Arthur Kennedy), Kirk Edwards (Alan Hale), and Terry; but they give no other information. Johnny talks gibberish to Baumeister and knocks him out. Terry speaks German, and they eliminate the guards and search the office before escaping. Terry discovers important information, but Kirk couldn't find food. Wounded Lloyd goes to give himself up, but the four find him on a bridge. They take a gun from a guard, overcome others, and put on their German uniforms. They get on a train. Baumeister pursues them and flies to Berlin.

Jed makes four copies of the plans. When the train stops, an officer ejects them from Goering's car and tells waiting Baumeister what he did. The five eat and drink after Terry helps them overcome two soldiers. Terry proposes they blow up a chemical factory. Kirk knocks out a guard. Terry and Johnny start a fire. While escaping, Lloyd is wounded. Terry takes him to a doctor, and Kaethe (Nancy Coleman) knows English and helps them. A woman hears Lloyd. Johnny shoots two police, and the doctor says that Lloyd died. Kirk hits two soldiers with a shovel so they can take their car.

The four go to the home of Kaethe and are fed by a couple. Kaethe comes in and says the two are not her parents. Terry shoots the man as the police approach. On the roof Kirk is wounded and falls. Baumeister arrives, and the three take a car, guided by Kaethe, who stays to fight in the resistance. Terry drives across the Dutch border, followed by Baumeister. Johnny disrupts them by throwing out a seat. Baumeister calls, and Terry drives through an ambush. They run out of gas and find a RAF plane being prepared to bomb English waterworks. Baumeister finds the car and uses dogs to track them. The three see them and manage to take the plane as Jed is wounded. Terry and Johnny use the guns to mow down the German soldiers. Terry takes off. They radio, and Johnny drops the bomb on German guns. In the final scene they fly to England as Terry says he wants to go to Australia and take on the Japs.

This heroic propaganda film arouses the fighting spirit against the Germans by giving five men victories against long odds in enemy territory.

Copyright © 2004 by Sanderson Beck

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