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The Sullivans (1944)

Approved  |   |  Biography, Drama, History  |  3 February 1944 (USA)
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Reviews: 45 user | 13 critic

The lives of a close-knit group of brothers growing up in Iowa during the days of the Great Depression and of World War II and their eventual deaths in action in the Pacific theater are ... See full summary »


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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
Selena Royle ...
Mrs. Alleta Sullivan
Edward Ryan ...
Albert Leo 'Al' Sullivan
Trudy Marshall ...
Genevieve 'Gen' Sullivan
John Campbell ...
Francis Henry 'Frank' Sullivan
James Cardwell ...
Madison Abel 'Matt' Sullivan
George Offerman Jr. ...
Joesph Eugene 'Joe' Sullivan
Father Francis
Lt. Cmdr. Robinson


The lives of a close-knit group of brothers growing up in Iowa during the days of the Great Depression and of World War II and their eventual deaths in action in the Pacific theater are chronicled in this film based on a true story. Written by JD-2

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The Guts and Glory of the Fighting Navy!! See more »


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

3 February 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Fighting Sullivans  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)


(archive footage)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


According to the book 'The Films of World War II' by Joe Morella, Edward Z. Epstein and John Griggs (1973), this film " . . . had undergone a title change between its initial New York release and subsequent bookings. Originally it was entitled 'The Sullivans' but proved to be a disappointment at the box office until the new title was appended, whereupon it became an unqualified success." See more »


July 1939 Calendar is wrong. July 1st, 1939 was on a Saturday, not a Monday. See more »


Naval Officer at Boat Launching: Today, as we launch the destroyer, U.S.S. The Sullivans, the parents of the five Sullivan boys are here to share in the tribute to their sons, even as they shared their fighting spirit. As this ship slides down the ways, it carries with it a special armor all its own: The flaming and undaunted spirit that is the heritage of its name. The five Sullivan boys are gone; the U.S.S. The Sullivans carries on. May God bless and protect this ship. May her destiny be as glorious as the name she bears.
See more »


Referenced in You Bet Your Life: Episode #8.11 (1957) See more »


Anchors Aweigh
Music by Charles A. Zimmerman
Played when the decoration is placed in the window and at the end
See more »

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User Reviews

A touching tribute to the 5 Sullivan brothers who lost their lives together in WWII.
29 October 1998 | by (Brea, Ca. USA) – See all my reviews

The Sullivan brothers grew up together in a small town in Iowa. They would eventually join the Navy after Pearl Harbor was attacked and would be killed in action. The story is a true one and heart wrenching to say the least. Thomas Mitchell is perfectly cast as the father. A very young Bobby Driscoll plays little Al, the youngest of the 5 Sullivan boys. Anne Baxter and Ward Bond were magnificent. Get yourself a box of Kleenex for this one folks. It will stay with you for a long time.

28 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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