Operation Disaster (1950)
"Morning Departure" (original title)

 |  Drama, History, War  |  18 May 1950 (France)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.9/10 from 460 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 4 critic

The crew of a submarine is trapped on the sea floor when it sinks. How can they be rescued before they run out of air?



, (play)
0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

All leave is canceled so that a British submarine can be sent after a new German warship. They chase it so far that they have no fuel to get home.

Director: Anthony Asquith
Stars: John Mills, Louis Bradfield, Ronald Millar
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

The attack by British submarines on the German battleship "Tirpitz" in a Norwegian fjord during the Second World War.

Director: Ralph Thomas
Stars: John Mills, John Gregson, Donald Sinden
Action | Biography | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In the Mediterranean in 1941 the Italians start using underwater chariots to mine the undersides of allied ships. Explosives expert Lionel Crabbe arrives in Gibraltar to organise defenses, ... See full summary »

Director: William Fairchild
Stars: Laurence Harvey, Dawn Addams, Michael Craig
Hell in Korea (1956)
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

In 1951 during the Korean War retreat a small British re-con group is surrounded by Chinese troops and holds out in a lonely temple atop a hill.

Director: Julian Amyes
Stars: Stephen Boyd, Ronald Lewis, George Baker
Dunkirk (1958)
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Two stories in one - an easygoing British Corporal in France finds himself responsible for the lives of his men when their officer is killed. He has to get them back to Britain somehow. ... See full summary »

Director: Leslie Norman
Stars: John Mills, Richard Attenborough, Robert Urquhart
Malta Story (1953)
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In 1942 Britain was clinging to the island of Malta since it was critical to keeping Allied supply lines open. The Axis also wanted it for their own supply lines. Plenty of realistic ... See full summary »

Director: Brian Desmond Hurst
Stars: Alec Guinness, Jack Hawkins, Anthony Steel
Adventure | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

During WW2 in North Africa, a medical field unit must cross the desert in their ambulance in order to reach the British lines in Alexandria.

Director: J. Lee Thompson
Stars: John Mills, Anthony Quayle, Sylvia Syms
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

When a leak of information in the African Section of British Intelligence is discovered security man Daintry is brought in to investigate.

Director: Otto Preminger
Stars: Richard Attenborough, Nicol Williamson, Derek Jacobi
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A true WW2 story: the British Navy must find and destroy a powerful German warship.

Directors: Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger
Stars: John Gregson, Anthony Quayle, Ian Hunter
Action | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The World War II story of the British Navy's effort to defeat Nazi Germany's most powerful warship.

Director: Lewis Gilbert
Stars: Kenneth More, Dana Wynter, Carl Möhner
Biography | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The true story of airman Douglas Bader who overcame the loss of both legs in a 1931 flying accident to become a successful fighter pilot and wing leader during World War II.

Director: Lewis Gilbert
Stars: Kenneth More, Muriel Pavlow, Lyndon Brook
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A film that chronicles the events of the Hindenburg disaster in which a zeppelin burst into flames.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: George C. Scott, Anne Bancroft, William Atherton


Cast overview, first billed only:
Lt. Cmdr. Armstrong
Nigel Patrick ...
Peter Hammond ...
Andrew Crawford ...
Michael Brennan ...
George Cole ...
Victor Maddern ...
Roddy McMillan ...
Leading Seaman Andrews
Frank Coburn ...
Leading Seaman Brough
Jack Stewart ...
Leading Seaman Kelly
James Hayter ...
Able Seaman Nobby Clark
George Thorpe ...
Cmdr. Gates


The crew of a submarine is trapped on the sea floor when it sinks. How can they be rescued before they run out of air?

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


THRILLING SEA DRAMA! (ad for "Operation Disaster" - all caps) See more »


Drama | History | War


See all certifications »




Release Date:

18 May 1950 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Operation Disaster  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The first of two films and Two TV series that Roy Ward Baker would direct George Cole in. See more »


In the scene where the destroyers are first seen searching for the Trojan, the pennant letters on the side of one of the destroyers are seen in reverse. See more »


Helen Armstong: Why does the Navy insist on doing everything at the crack of dawn? The sea's there all day.
Lieutenant Commander Armstrong: It impresses the taxpayers.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Routine equipment exercise goes very wrong for submariners.
7 August 2008 | by (Washington State) – See all my reviews

A Rank production, with passable production quality and excellent acting. Much stock footage and a healthy amt. of rear projection, par for keeping costs down on Rank dramatic quickies. Since the screenplay was adapted from a play, its stage origins are still somewhat apparent. The performances of Mills, and a very young Attenborough, plus seemingly one-half the J.R. Rank stable of regulars are very good. The sets and costumes were surprisingly ratty--long in the tooth! Still, this is only a few years after the war, and things were still very hard-up in England. Ultimately, this is a "talker" and not an "actioner", and it does fairly well for all that, though not spectacularly so. The ending, to me, disappointed. I do recommend this for classic movie fans.

9 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
morning departure t class? fvhz
Roy Ward Baker simonrosenbaum
Discuss Operation Disaster (1950) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: