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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 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
If you like Irish character studies you'll love this movie. This movie follows in flash back 50 years in the true-life story of Irish immigrant Martin Maher. Tyrone Power plays Martin wonderfully. When Martin arrives in America he takes a civilian waiter job at the US Military Academy at West Point. Docked for "breakage", he joins the Army and works at several different jobs at the Point. The last job being assistant to the "Master of the Sword" played by the very versatile Ford stock company player (Ward Bond). At West Point, Martin meets and marries the love of his life Mary O'Donnell marvelously brought to life by Maureen O'Hara. Martin and Mary setup housekeeping and are able to bring Martin's father Old Martin (Donald Crisp) and brother Dinny to America. When Old Martin first meets Mary he is impressed when he asks if she still `Has the Irish' and she is able to speak in Gaelic.
As the movie unfolds you will really care about Martin, Mary, old Martin and the cadets Martin helps through the Academy. Due to talent of the director John Ford and cast, the characters appear to be real people--not just a bunch of actors who made a movie. You'll be fascinated by the class "The Stars Fell On " (graduating class of Generals Eisenhower, Bradley, etc.) This movie will stir up patriotic feelings, but also shows the high cost of war. You will smile and just might shed a tear before this one is over. You will not regret the time spent with Martin Maher--and may find yourself thinking about this movie for a long time after you see it. This is indeed, one of Pappy Ford's finest.
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