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‘Vic Morrow host-narrates this documentary on the ultimate weapon in the U.S. Army’s arsenal — the soldier. As technology increased the soldier’s potential, the importance of effective ordnance increased. Scenes in this THE BIG PICTURE examine the testing and evaluation of weapons and equipment that ensured the U.S. soldier got nothing but the best.’
Originally a public domain film from the National Archives, slightly cropped to remove uneven edges, with the aspect ratio corrected, and one-pass brightness-contrast-color correction & mild video noise reduction applied.
The soundtrack was also processed with volume normalization, noise reduction, clipping reduction, and/or equalization (the resulting sound, though not perfect, is far less noisy than the original).
Victor Morrow (born Victor Morozoff; February 14, 1929 – July 23, 1982) was an American actor. He came to prominence as one of the leads of the ABC drama series Combat! (1962–1967), which earned him an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Continued Performance by an Actor in a Series. Active on screen for over three decades, his film roles include Blackboard Jungle (1955), King Creole (1958), God’s Little Acre (1958), Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry (1974), and The Bad News Bears (1976). Morrow continued acting up to his death during filming of Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983) when he and two child actors were killed by a stunt helicopter crash…
Morrow was born in the New York City borough of the Bronx, to a middle-class Jewish family. He was a son of Harry Morozoff, an electrical engineer, and his wife Jean (Kress) Morozoff. Morrow dropped out of high school when he was 17 and enlisted in the United States Navy.
Morrow attracted attention playing Stanley Kowalski in a touring production of A Streetcar Named Desire. His first movie role was in Blackboard Jungle (1955), playing a thug student who torments teacher Glenn Ford.
It was made by MGM, who then put Morrow in Tribute to a Bad Man (1956). Morrow appeared on television, guest starring on shows like The Millionaire, Matinee Theatre, Climax!, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Restless Gun, Trackdown, Richard Diamond, Private Detective, and Telephone Time.
Morrow had support roles in Men in War (1957), directed by Anthony Mann, and was third billed in Hell’s Five Hours (1958). He starred alongside Elvis Presley and an all-star supporting cast including Walter Matthau and Carolyn Jones in the movie King Creole (1958), directed by Michael Curtiz. Mann asked him back for God’s Little Acre (1958).
However Morrow remained mostly a television actor, appearing in Naked City, Wichita Town, The Rifleman, The Lineup, Johnny Ringo, The Brothers Brannagan, The Law and Mr. Jones, The Lawless Years, The Barbara Stanwyck Show, General Electric Theatre, Target: The Corruptors, The Tall Man, Outlaws, Bonanza, and The Untouchables…
Morrow had his first leading role in Portrait of a Mobster (1961) playing Dutch Schultz.
He continued as mostly a television actor, appearing in Death Valley Days, Alcoa Premiere, and Suspense.
Morrow was cast in the lead role of Sergeant “Chip” Saunders in ABC’s Combat!, a World War II drama, which aired from 1962 to 1967. Pop culture scholar Gene Santoro has written:
“TV’s longest-running World War II drama (1962–1967) was really a collection of complex 50-minute movies. Salted with battle sequences, they follow a squad’s travails from D-Day on – a gritty ground-eye view of men trying to salvage their humanity and survive. Melodrama, comedy, and satire come into play as top-billed Lieutenant Hanley (Rick Jason) and Sergeant Saunders (Vic Morrow) lead their men toward Paris … The relentlessness hollows antihero Saunders out: at times, you can see the tombstones in his eyes.”
His friend and fellow actor on Combat!, Rick Jason, described Morrow as “a master director” who directed “one of the greatest anti-war films I’ve ever seen”. He was referring to the two-part episode of Combat! entitled Hills Are for Heroes, which was written by Gene L. Coon…