The Big Red One Essay

1539 words - 6 pages

The 1st infantry division, known as The Big Red One had a very difficult job. Not only was it very physical but a very stressful mental job in the European Theatre in World War II. The 1st infantry unit had their own little battle to fight, survival. As Sap said at the end of the movie, "Survivors"¦. Only glory in war"¦if you know what I mean." This is also one of the themes the film writer, Samuel Fuller, was trying to convey to the audience. Another theme is that the axis and ally soldiers are both human beings but in war they are portrayed as animals in the fact that they are easily expended with out much question. Another good example of what I believe Samuel Fuller is trying to portray is the fact that the 1st infantry division is used in the same way that pawns are played in the game of chess in which there are many examples to support this throughout the movie. In general I believe the theme Samuel Fuller is trying to convey to his audiences is that the 1st infantry riffle man soldier was the first to attack, the first to secure enemy lines, the first to die, while trying to survive the game.The soldiers of the 1st infantry riffle men were young and had many hopes and dreams, and yet were shown more fear and evil than most men will ever possibly feel. These men who were in the 1st infantry division were the first line of defense. They moved into enemy territory and secured it. They did most of the fighting and most of the dying. The men in the movie, Griff, Vinch, Sap, and Johnson, did not want to get to know the names nor the faces of the replacements that were sent in place of those men who lost their lives in their group. The reason for this is that they all knew that it would only be a small time before the replacements were killed and new men would take their place once again. It would be gravely destructing to their minds and hearts if they had bonded to the replacements just to turn around to see they've been killed. They felt they needed to distance themselves from them in order to keep themselves as sane as they could in mist of the war.At one point in the movie one of the men, I believe it was Griff, told the sergeant that they had just murdered those German soldiers and the Sergeant replied, " It is not murder when you kill an animal is it? You kill it." The very next scene is of a German soldier that is telling his commander that he will not murder any more people. His sergeant said the same thing, "It is not murder, this is called killing the enemy just like killing an animal." These two statements from both sides of the war leads one to believe that the soldiers were thought of as animals and not human beings with a name, a face, and a heart. This shows that the 1st infantry riffle men on the U.S. side of the war were nothing but easy expenditure. They were something to face of the enemy with so that the rest of our military out fit can move in with little loss. Another way the American...

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