Sergeant Joe Gunn and his tank crew pick up five British soldiers, a Frenchman and a Sudanese man with an Italian prisoner crossing the Libyan Desert to rejoin their command after the fall ... See full summary »
J. Carrol Naish
During the Second World War, onboard a small insignificant ship in the U.S. Pacific Fleet, an event occurs unlike any that the United States Navy has ever experianced. A Ship's Captain is removed from his command by his Executive Officer in an apparent outright act of mutiny. As the trial of the mutineers unfold, it is then learned that the Captain of the ship was mentally unstable, perhaps even insane. The Navy must then decide: was the Caine Mutiny a criminal act? Or an act of courage to save a ship from destruction at the hands of her Captain. Written by
Anthony Hughes <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Captain Queeg's portrayal parallels that of the captain of the USS Hull, one of three destroyers lost during Typhoon Cobra--also called "Halsey's Typhoon," because it struck US Navy Task Force 38, commanded by Adm. William F. Halsey). Lt. Cmdr. Joseph Marks was a veteran of Atlantic convoys, but as commander of the Hull he alienated the crew shortly after he took command by doing such things as forbidding social conversations between officers and enlisted men and canceling shore leave for minor infractions. While there was no mutiny on the Hull, Marks was found by a court of inquiry to have been too inexperienced in command to properly tend to his ship's safety. Three ships were actually sunk during the typhoon--the destroyers Spence, Hull and Monaghan. The storm and its impact is well described in "Halsey's Typhoon" by Bob Drury and Tom Clavin. See more »
At the Navy administration building in San Francisco where the trial takes place, most of the automobiles shown are post-war. Among these are a 1949 or 1950 Ford, some early 1950's GM cars (perhaps Chevrolets or Pontiacs), and what looks like an early 1950s Plymouth. See more »
And so today you are full-fledged ensigns. Three short months ago you assembled here from all parts of the nation, from all walks of life: field, factory, office and college campus. Each of you knew what the fighting was about, or you wouldn't have volunteered. Each of you knew that the American way of life must be defended by life itself. From here on your education must continue in the more demanding school of actual war. Wearing the gold stripe of ensign in the United States ...
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"There has never been a mutiny in a ship of the United States Navy. The truths of this film lie not in its incidents but in the way a few men meet the crisis of their lives." See more »
Conflicted emotions and loyalties, a conflicted captain, and a conflicted movie...
Director Edward Dmytryk and screenwriter Stanlet Roberts, adapting Herman Wouk's novel, certainly didn't set out to make an anti-Navy movie concerning a junkyard Naval ship beset with a paranoid captain, and indeed their "simple" dedication at the end is to the entire United States Navy, yet the plot mechanisms are slanted in that direction even if the handling is not. Beginning the picture with a green "Princeton tiger" and Naval Academy grad attempting to woo a band singer before duty calls was a safe, stolid move, yet Wouk's story manages to cut much wider and deeper than the Hollywood generalities, and once his plot gets cooking the film is vastly entertaining. Humphrey Bogart is the new by-the-books captain aboard a Naval bottom-feeder, quickly driving his crew and his vessel into the ground with his idiosyncratic behavior. Dymtryk is careful while introducing all the different personalities aboard ship, and he doesn't want us to miss a trick, yet in the film's final stages (after the court martial, when defense attorney José Ferrer has his say), the tone of the picture does an about-face and hopes to show us all sides of the situation. The filmmakers want to have their cake and eat it too, and the resulting epilogue goes down like bad medicine. Still, the performances are first-rate, particularly by Bogart and, in perhaps his finest acting turn, Van Johnson. *** from ****
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