Paratrooper

  • 1953
  • Movie
  • NR
  • War

Ladd stars as a guilt-ridden American Army officer who resigns his commission after ordering a friend and fellow officer to jump from a plane which is about to crash. Ladd, the plane's pilot, manages to land the plane safely, but his friend dies when his chute fails to open. Determined to avoid life-or-death decisions and claiming to be Canadian, Ladd enlists...read more

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Ladd stars as a guilt-ridden American Army officer who resigns his commission after ordering a friend and fellow officer to jump from a plane which is about to crash. Ladd, the plane's pilot, manages to land the plane safely, but his friend dies when his chute fails to open. Determined

to avoid life-or-death decisions and claiming to be Canadian, Ladd enlists in the British Army, going to paratrooper training camp. He keeps his past secret and merely follows orders. Commanding officer Genn takes notice of Ladd's skill and digs into his past records to learn more. In the

meantime, Ladd has fallen for Stephen, a friendly British girl who serves as a parachute packer. Ladd's unit is called on to fight in North Africa, assigned to recapture an airfield from the Germans. Led by Genn, the troops soon find themselves stuck in the middle of a minefield with the enemy

closing in on them. Genn is wounded, forcing Ladd to take command. Ladd arms himself with a bazooka and blows open a path in the minefield, clearing the way for his fellow soldiers to reach safety. Upon his return to the base, Ladd decides that he must face the responsibility before him and

continue to lead his fellow soldiers in battle. The first of three pictures Ladd contracted to do in Britain (THE BLACK KNIGHT and HELL BELOW ZERO followed), PARATROOPER met with controversy when some British critics felt that a British actor should have been cast in the lead. Others, however,

came to Ladd's defense and were thrilled that he was visiting their shores. Ladd even held a press conference to ease the growing tension. Regardless of what the critics wrote, British fans adored Ladd, voting him the most popular actor of that year. Even Winston Churchill gave a show of support

by commending Ladd on his performance in the film.

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Ladd stars as a guilt-ridden American Army officer who resigns his commission after ordering a friend and fellow officer to jump from a plane which is about to crash. Ladd, the plane's pilot, manages to land the plane safely, but his friend dies when his c… (more)

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