Pork Chop Hill was based on the eyewitness essays of ex-soldier S. L. A. Marshall. The film is set during the Korean police action. While diplomats argue pointlessly over the shape of the negotiation tables at Panmunjon, United Nations troops bleed and die. Lieutenant Gregory Peck leads a 135-man unit on the attack of the Chinese-held Pork Chop Hill.
When reinforcements finally arrive, only 25 of Peck's men survive (and they aren't the usual survivors we've come to expect from earlier, cliché-ridden war films). Among the American troops are such dependable performers as Harry Guardino, Woody Strode, Rip Torn, Barry Atwater, George Peppard, Robert Blake and Martin Landau.
Former cowboy-star Bob Steele also shows up briefly as an American general. According to director Lewis Milestone, Pork Chop Hill was cut by nearly twenty minutes because the wife of star Gregory Peck felt that her husband made his first entrance too late into the picture.
True or not, the film does show signs of post-production tampering, with flashes of several excised scenes showing up under the main title credits.