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In Which We Serve (1942)

Not Rated | | Drama, War | 23 December 1942 (USA)
This "story of a ship," the British destroyer HMS Torrin, is told in flash backs by survivors as they cling to a life raft.

Directors:

(as Noel Coward),

Writer:

(by) (as Noel Coward)
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 5 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Captain E. V. Kinross R.N. / Captain 'D' (as Noel Coward)
Derek Elphinstone ...
No. 1
...
Flags
Robert Sansom ...
Guns
Philip Friend ...
Torps
Chimmo Branson ...
Midshipman
Ballard Berkeley ...
Engineer Commander
Hubert Gregg ...
Pilot
...
Doc
Michael Whittaker ...
Sub
Kenneth Carten ...
Sub-Lieutenant R.N.V.R.
John Varley ...
Secco
...
Chief Petty Officer Hardy / Walter Hardy
Caven Watson ...
Brodie
...
Ordinary Seaman Blake / Shorty Blake
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Storyline

This is the story of a British Naval ship, HMS Torrin, from its construction to its sinking in the Mediterranean during action in World War II. The ship's first and only commanding officer is the experienced Captain E.V. Kinross who trains his men not only to be loyal to him but to the country and most importantly, to themselves. They face challenges at sea and also at home. They lose some of their shipmates in action and some of their loved ones in the devastation that is the blitz. Throughout it all, the men of the Torrin serve valiantly and heroically. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

IT STANDS ALONE - The Greatest Of All Motion Pictures! [Australia theatrical] See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

23 December 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hidalgos de los mares  »

Box Office

Budget:

£240,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Sound System)

Color:

(archive footage)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There was a tragedy during the shooting of the film, during a relatively straightforward special effects scene of an explosion in a gun turret. After the first take, Lean (Coward wasn't present) was dissatisfied. Chief electrician Jock Dymore, keen to get the scene wrapped before lunch, climbed onto the set with a bottle full of the flash-powder used for the explosive effect. The containers they were using were still white hot from the first take, and the resulting blast killed Dymore and seriously injured two others. See more »

Goofs

When soldiers evacuated from Dunkirk are disembarking they are shown carrying Lee Enfield No.4 rifles. This model of Lee Enfield was not issued to troops until later in the war. They should have been shown with the earlier model Short Magazine Lee Enfield. In most (all?) other scenes the correct model for the period is shown. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Voice: [voiceover] This is the story of a ship...
[long sequence of ship-building and launch]
See more »

Connections

Featured in War Stories (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Run Rabbit Run
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Ralph T. Butler
Music by Noel Gay
See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Ship Comes First ***
4 February 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

When "In Which We Serve" was made in 1942, England was in the midst of its finest hour. We see a film of honor, devotion, and loyalty to the realm.

It is basically the story of a boat being torpedoed and the flashbacks of 3 sailors aboard the doomed wreckage.

Noel Coward, a brilliant talent, did not perform well here. His scenes with his children appear awkward and he is unusually cold towards them. While a war is going on, that strong sentiment of a loving friendly tie is missing.

Kudos go to Celia Johnson, as Alix, his wife in the film. She states in a memorable way that in the navy, devotion to the ship comes first. John Mills is also effective as a navy man. In a heart-wrenching scene, he must tell a fellow shipman that his wife and mother-in-law have been killed in the blitz.

The ending is poignantly done. A tear will come to the eye as Coward says goodbye to those who survived the torpedoed ship.

A film of valor and of the human spirit. England was certainly at its finest hour.


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