Prisoner Of Japan

1687. PRISONER Of JAPAN (1942-usa). WITH alan Baxter, gertrude michael. DIRECTED by Arthur Ripley. Based on a story by edcer ulmer. Back in 1942, just after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and America was plunged into World War II, anti-Japanese sentiment across the nation was at a fever pitch. This was reflected in many a Hollywood movie; the title Of this intriguing, thoughtful melodrama perfectly expresses America’s fears and anxieties as it forged ahead in its war effort. At the same time, the film serves as a message to its viewers that, if the war was to be won, there would have to be no shortage Of heroics and sacrifice. The setting is a remote South Seas island, where some United States Navy personnel are searching for secret Japanese transmitters that are being used to locate and spy on American destroyers – and that are allowing the enemy to blast those ships out Of the sea. Alan Baxter, usually cast in gangster roles, stars as David Bowman, a philosophical young astronomer. Bowman lives on the island, which is actually a Japanese military base. The sky he loves so much is now being lit up by bombs rather than stars; as a result, he’s mired in self-pity, and has developed a weakness for bourbon. Worst Of all, Bowman has come under the influence Of a sadistic, seemingly all-powerful Japanese commandant; he and the “little brown men” under his authority are operating a transmitter, and their skullduggery will surely destroy America’s Pacific fleet. Bowman’s character reflects the view Of the isolationist who hates war and would prefer that his country steer clear Of conflict. After December 7,1941, there could no longer be any basis for this sentiment. So what will it take to wake this astronomer up, to get his head out Of the heavens and in touch with his fighting, patriotic instinct? 65 minutes. Drama