During the second-half of 1944, various Allied units stationed in Belgium attempt to smash their way through the tough German defenses at the Siegfried Line. If successful, the way to Germany is wide-open. One of these units is the American 3rd Armored Division. The film's story concerns a particular five-tank platoon, commanded by Lt. Rawson, the best platoon in Captain Bob Horner's Company C. During an ambush, the lead tank, California Jane, commanded by Master Sgt. Joe Davis, is seriously damaged by a German Panther tank. Davis is severely wounded and his driver is killed. Soon after, a replacement sergeant takes over Davis' role. However, the new man, staff sergeant Francis Aloysius Sullivan is cocky, heartless and tactless. His behavior frustrates both his men and his superiors. Many suspect that Sullivan is a show-off, and eager for an aggressive combat style in order to receive promotions, medals and praises. Some of the other men in the platoon are Danny Kolowicz, Sgt. Lemchek...
The Happy, Scrappy Story of those Hit-'Em-First Heroes!
Did You Know?
In all of his films, Samuel Fuller
--who wrote the story for this film, but not the screenplay--has a character named "Lemcheck". In this film it's a sergeant, played by Harry Bellaver
. See more
Before the tanks move out at the beginning of the film. Lemchek is working on the tank with tools spread all over the rear deck and engine compartment. The commanding officer gives the order to pull out with no mention of the work or gathering the tools. See more
Referenced in Family Viewing
The Washington Post
Music by John Philip Sousa
Played when the tanks roll into Mons See more