Lawson (Cliff Robertson), an American naval officer specialising in Asiatic languages, is sent to the Pacific to assist a group of British soldiers (Michael Caine, Denholm Elliott, and Harry Andrews) in a seemingly simple mission to knock out the enemy's key transmitter. The allied soldiers soon realise they are up against unsurpassable odds and that hopes of survival are very remote. Lawson takes charge of the group and devises a daring plan of escape. Robertson lends the film emotional depth with his portrayal of Lawson as a reluctant hero transforming himself into a leader as the suicidal nature of the mission grows ever clearer. In the tradition of Aldrich's earlier action-adventure extravaganzas THE DIRTY DOZEN and THE FLIGHT OF THE PHOENIX, TOO LATE THE HERO features a formidable cast, exotic sets, special effects, and an ever-tightening grip of suspense.