Other Cowboy Stars — Bob Steele in “Pork Chop Hill”
December 21, 2011
I humbly submit for your perusal a study in contrasts. The year? 1959. The actor? Bob Steele. The films? “Atomic Submarine” and “Pork Chop Hill.”
The Gorham Production of “Atomic Submarine” starred one Arthur Franz. “Pork Chop Hill” featured a fellow by the name of Gregory Peck. Spencer Gordon Bennett (“Killer Ape”) directed the sub flick. Academy Award winner Lewis Milestone (“All Quiet on the Western Front”) directed this film about the final days of the Korean war.
“Pork Chop Hill” is a good old-fashioned WW2 film. Watching this film, I kept hoping that Steele’s character would have a corny back-story like Gavin MacCleod who’s eager to rotate home because he just won a Caddie in a raffle. Or the soldier who’s having a lousy birthday. Or maybe he would perform some awesome heroics like injured Robert Blake who takes a machine-gun nest single-handed, is ordered off the battlefield yet returns to fights some more.
No. BS has one scene. It lasts about 30 seconds. He has 2 lines, 3 sentences. Here they are:
“Lieutenant, prepare to counterattack Pork Chop Hill if necessary. You got that?”
“You understand this is only an alert?”
And yet, he has 7th billing. Gregory Peck is on the first card, this is the second.