Once a Marine, always a Marine. After three decades in the corps, Sergeant Major William Bailey, a tough-minded drillmaster serving in the Philippines, retires. He leaves with one regret: he never had the chance to put his courage and fighting spirit to the test in real combat. Then comes Japan's World War II invasion of the archipelago – and civilian Bailey and the irregulars he's trained prove their mettle while defending a bridge vital to the enemy's advance. Wallace Beery plays gruff devil dog lifer Bailey in this wartime Technicolor flag-waver spiked with the fervor of its time. Fay Bainter plays Bailey's wife, whose courage proves as unflinching as her husband's in the film's final battle scenes. Also shining in the cast are Marilyn Maxwell in an early-career role, Keye Luke (Number One Son in the Charlie Chan mysteries) and uncredited child actor Robert Blake.