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The Long Gray Line (1955)

7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 1,588 users  
Reviews: 39 user | 7 critic

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 »

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(screenplay), (book), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Martin 'Marty' Maher
...
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
...
Cpl. Rudolph Heinz
...
Erin O'Brien-Moore ...
Mrs. Koehler (as Erin O'Brien Moore)
Walter Ehlers ...
Mike Shannon (as Walter D. Ehlers)
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Storyline

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<dhuffman11@kc.rr.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

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


Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 February 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ce n'est qu'un au revoir  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,748,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Ford originally wanted to cast John Wayne as Marty Maher. See more »

Goofs

In the scene where Marty Maher (Tyrone Power) is giving swimming instructions to the West Point cadets, cadet James Nilsson 'Red' Sundstrom (William Leslie) dives into to the pool, swims the length of the pool and does a flip turn to swim a return lap. The flip turn in swimming was not in use in the era represented in this part of the film - pre-World War 1. The flip turn was developed by Tex Robertson of the University of Texas while training Adolph Kiefer for the 1936 Olympics. See more »

Quotes

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 »

Connections

Referenced in A Football Life: The Forward Pass (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

The Washington Post
Music by John Philip Sousa
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

All Ford and all heart
6 February 2000 | by (Cherry Hill, New Jersey) – See all my reviews

You could call "The Long Grey Line" an affectionate tribute by one American institution to another: John Ford to West Point. All the Fordian elements, unashamed sentimentality, boisterious comedy, stark tragedy, are all here, and Ford and his actors convey them all beautifully.

And what actors! Tyrone Power finally proved that he could act in his moving portrayal of Martin Maher, a real-life West Point legend who started out as a fresh-off-the-boat waiter and wound up as the Academy's much-venerated Master of the Sword. Maher died in 1961 at age eighty-four, just as an era he represented was dying, too. Maureen O'Hara gives her usual strong portrayal as his devoted wife, likewise Donald Crisp as his father. Two of the most beloved members of the Ford stock company are here, too. Ward Bond playes Captain Koehler, the previous Master of the Sword who takes young Martin under his wing. And Harry Carey, Jr. has a good spot as the young Dwight Eisenhower, who was going bald even then and trying to stop it with hair-restorer.

A military "Goodbye, Mr. Chips" this may be, but as a heartfelt, human tribute to the Point and the men who made it, as well as good, overlooked Ford, this film is a hidden treasure.


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

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