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The High and the Mighty (1954)

Not Rated | | Action, Adventure, Drama | 3 July 1954 (USA)
When a commercial airliner develops engine problems on a trans-Pacific flight and the pilot loses his nerve, it is up to the washed-up co-pilot Dan Roman to bring the plane in safely.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
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May Holst
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Lydia Rice
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John Sullivan
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Sally McKee
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Ed Joseph
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Gustave Pardee
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Ken Childs
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Donald Flaherty
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Humphrey Agnew
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Lillian Pardee
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Gonzales (as Gonzalez Gonzalez)
...
Howard Rice
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Lenny Wilby, navigator
...
Hobie Wheeler
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Storyline

One disaster after another happens on this trans-Pacific flight. You have the pilot who loses his nerve! The washed-up co-pilot. The milquetoast flight engineer. The young hot shot second officer. And a cabin full of passengers with every range of problems and personalities there could possibly be. Here you have the Duke in a role he didn't want, and a movie with the title song that became Duke's theme. What else could any John Wayne fan want? It's all here, and then some. Written by williamsportump@chilitech.net

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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The 2-year best seller blasts to the screen with every kind of love there is! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 July 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

William A. Wellman's The High and the Mighty  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,470,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (RCA Sound System)

Color:

(WarnerColor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Towards the end of the movie, when Robert Stack tells John Wayne to whistle something (because he works better with music), the tune that Wayne whistles is "I'm a Ramblin' Wreck from Georgia Tech". See more »

Goofs

In the flashback story her husband tells, Clara Joseph falls down some stairs and kicks a waiter's tray in the process. However, when they cut from the closeup of her feet, she is obviously sitting on the bottom step. She then leans back, takes aim, and kicks the tray. She then lies back like it was all one continuous motion. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Ben Sneed: Hey fella, ain't you Dan Roman?
Dan Roman: Yeah.
Ben Sneed: I heard you whistlin' and I said to myself only one guy does that just so.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Spin City: The High and the Mighty (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

Semper Paratus
("Always Ready") (uncredited)
Written by Francis S. Van Boskerck
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User Reviews

Mike and Pat--Don't hold this one back
14 January 2002 | by (Long Island NY) – See all my reviews

Probably the most popular film that has never been released to any video medium, The High and the Mighty is th4e granddaddy of all of those disaster pictures that became popular in the 70s, but they do not hold a candle to this one.

The Wayne Family in general, and I would assume sons Michael and Patrick in particular, own the film along with some others. One has to wonder why they do not release it. I have a copy I recorded from HBO many years ago and when aired it was a great print. I am fortunate to be able to see it now and then at my own leisure.

The plot of a crippled airliner in the middle of the Pacific doesn't accurately describe this film. It is a true character study with some of the finest actors of the day on hand delivering brilliant performances. Those that stand out include Jan Sterling (oscar nominee and Golden Globe winner), Claire Trevor (Oscar nominated), Phil Harris, Robert Newton, and David Brian. But each and every one in the rest of the cast can take a bow for a job well done. And That includes Wayne himself. His Dan Roman is complete, a man with strengths and weaknesses, but a man who eventually is the only one to step up in a time of crisis. It is one of his best performances.

William Wellman's direction keeps the film moving, Dimitri Tiomkin's Oscar winning score had viewers whistling along with Whistling Dan.

Mike and Pat, please let this one out before it becomes an antique. A new generation of your father's fans await this classic. It is not fair to deny them their chance to see him. And by the way. John Wayne was not the original choice to play Dan Roman. When He acquired the rights to the film he just wanted to produce it ( a la Bullfighter and the Lady). His choice wanted to play the role, but schedule conflicts prevented this, thus John Wayne had to play the role he offered to Spencer Tracy


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