The Long Gray Line (1955)

Approved  |   |  Biography, Comedy, Drama  |  9 February 1955 (USA)
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The life story of a salt-of-the-earth Irish immigrant, who becomes an Army Noncommissioned Officer and spends his 50 year career at the United States Military Academy at West Point. This ... See full summary »



(screenplay), (based upon "Bringing Up the Brass" by), 1 more credit »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mary O'Donnell
Old Martin
Capt. Herman J. Kohler
Kitty Carter
Charles 'Chuck' Dotson (as Phil Carey)
William Leslie ...
James Nilsson 'Red' Sundstrom
Abner 'Cherub' Overton
Sean McClory ...
Dinny Maher
Erin O'Brien-Moore ...
Mrs. Koehler (as Erin O'Brien Moore)
Walter Ehlers ...
Mike Shannon (as Walter D. Ehlers)


The life story of a salt-of-the-earth Irish immigrant, who becomes an Army Noncommissioned Officer and spends his 50 year career at the United States Military Academy at West Point. This includes his job-related experiences as well as his family life and the relationships he develops with young cadets with whom he befriends. Based on the life of a real person. Written by Dennis Huffman<>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Warms Your Heart! STIRS YOUR BLOOD! and fires your imagination!


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

9 February 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

John Ford's The Long Gray Line  »

Box Office


$1,748,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Average Shot Length (ASL) = 13 seconds See more »


Red's Medal of Honor that Kitty shows to Marty and Mary is the current design that goes around the neck. In the story, Red earned it during World War I and at that time the Medal of Honor was on a suspension ribbon like most other US medals. It wouldn't be redesigned for around the neck wear until 1944. See more »


Jim O'Carberry: This is Marty Maher. Whitey Larson.
Martin 'Marty' Maher: How do you do, sir?
Jim O'Carberry: If you have any trouble with horses, drop around and see Marty.
Whitey Larson: But he's in the infantry!
Jim O'Carberry: Well naturally! He knows horses. You don't think they'd put him in the cavalry, do ya?
See more »


Referenced in AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Jack Lemmon (1988) See more »


My Country, 'Tis of Thee
Traditional melody
Lyrics by Samuel F. Smith
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

forgotten classic
1 August 2002 | by (las vegas nevada) – See all my reviews

How did I ever miss this movie either on video or t.v. John Ford has his stock character actors and I was surprised that John Wayne did not have the starring role,which was well handled by Tyrone Power.A small masterpiece ably handled by all mixing the typical Ford traits of humor and serious modes. Loosely based on a true story,it is American propaganda at its finest and a nice tribute to the West Point Academy.One of Tyrone Powers' final films,and one of his best performances showing he could handle comedy,drama and a nice attempt at an Irish accent. The finale did become a bit soppy but does not detract from the overall movie. Sadly this film has been forgotten by the majority of film audiences and those in power who show supposed classics on the oldies channels.If it ever turns up on t.v. take a look and be pleasantly surprised.Maybe even todays so called writers,directors and actors might like to see how the master did it.

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