Yesterday’s Enemy – 1959
A Hammer film production released by Columbia Pictures
Copyright MCMLIX by Hammer Film Productions Ltd. – All rights reserved
MPAA Approved Certificate No. 19316
All characters and incidents portrayed and the names used are fictitious
Westrex Recording System
Black & White 95 mins
A squad of British soldiers, lost in the Burmese jungle during World War II, comes across a Japanese-occupied village. After a short battle, the British capture the village and also take prisoner a suspicious character, who Captain Langford is convinced is a paid informer for the Japanese. Initially, the man will not talk, but after Langford has had two innocent hostages shot to demonstrate his determination, he reveals the plans for a Japanese advance. Langford resolves that the information must at all costs be got to British headquarters, but the execution of the hostages provokes a bitter quarrel over the methods Langford is prepared to go to to attain his ends….
Watch the trailer on YouTube
Hammer’s war films (cf. “The Steel Bayonet”, “The Camp on Blood Island”) tended to examine the more controversial aspects of warfare and in this film the unpopular idea is suggested that the British were just as capable of committing atrocities as anyone else!
Actor Guy Rolfe also worked for Hammer in “The Stranglers of Bombay” (1959). For outrageous director William Castle, he starred in “Mr Sardonicus” (1961).
Interestingly, this film is probably the only Hammer production to have no musical accompaniment whatsoever. (1967’s “The Anniversary”, whilst having none during the action, does have music to accompany the opening and closing titles).
Writer Peter R. Newman died of a cerebral haemorrhage at the age of 48.
Details were complied viewing the actual film.
Source of viewing copy – The Hammer Graveyard Collection