Copy reviewed: Penguin Press, 2014. Hardcover, 528 pages.
Five Came Back tells the story not of Hollywood during World War II, but the stories of five directors who left Hollywood to serve and the men who followed them. Each left out of a sense of duty and returned with a different purpose. To set the tone, the book began in 1938 and discusses each directors’ background and last films before the war.
John Ford entered the service first. Beginning before America’s entry into the war, he was an officer in the Naval Reserves. In Hollywood during those years, he trained a group of men called the OSS Field Photo Unit. The Unit’s planned goal would be to film the war as it occurred. He even…
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