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Don't Go Near the Water (1957)

Approved | | Adventure, Comedy, Romance | December 1957 (USA)
On a small South Pacific island during WW2, various US Navy P.R. personnel pass the time romancing the nurses and the native girls while trying to avoid front line Sea Duty.

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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Lt. J.G. Max Siegel
Gia Scala ...
Melora Alba
...
Adam Garrett
...
Lt. Alice Tomlen
...
Gordon Ripwell
...
Lt. Cmdr. Clinton T. Nash
...
Deborah Aldrich
...
Ens. Tyson
...
Lt. Ross Pendleton
Mickey Shaughnessy ...
Farragut Jones
...
Adm. Junius Boatwright
Romney Brent ...
Mr. Alba - Melora's Father
...
Janie
Jack Straw ...
Lt. Cmdr. Gladstone
Robert Nichols ...
Lt. Cmdr. Hereford
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Storyline

On a small island in the South Pacific, the Navy's P.R. department is spending WWII without getting near a ship. Lt. Max Siegal is the Second in command to a clueless Commanding Officer who believes Sea Duty to be the worst punishment he can give one of his men. Siegal has to keep the foreign correspondents happy, keep his Commander out of trouble and figure out a way for one of the enlisted sailors to date the lady Lieutenant of his dreams - all while convincing a certain island schoolteacher that he's the man for her. Written by April M. Cheek <Aravis2713@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The hilarious best-seller is even funnier on the screen! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

December 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Geh nicht zu nah ans Wasser  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,495,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)| (Perspecta Sound)

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

When Ensign Tyson (Russ Tamblyn)first proclaims he's an ensign, he is clearly wearing silver bars, the insignia of a lieutenant, junior grade. An ensign wears gold bars--known familiarly as "chocolate bars." See more »

Quotes

Lt. Cmdr. Clinton T. Nash: Correspondence Liaison Officer, any report on Admiral Boatwright?
Lt. J.G. Max Siegel: Yes, sir. He refused to grant the 'Time' and 'Newsweek' interviews.
Lt. Cmdr. Clinton T. Nash: The admiral's one of those old-fashioned naval types who seems to believe that the Navy is merely a collection of ships.
Lt. J.G. Max Siegel: Remarkable attitude.
Lt. Cmdr. Clinton T. Nash: Isn't it! What did he say, exactly?
Lt. J.G. Max Siegel: Well, he said that the, uh, Public Relations outfit was a, uh, collection of oddballs and freaks.
Lt. Cmdr. Clinton T. Nash: Doesn't he realize our importance? The invaluable contribution that we're making?
Lt. J.G. Max Siegel: Well, ...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in What's My Line?: Episode dated 17 November 1957 (1957) See more »

Soundtracks

Anchors Aweigh
(uncredited)
Music by Charles A. Zimmerman and lyrics by Alfred Hart Miles
Heard as a theme
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User Reviews

 
Those Under Appreciated Navy Ad Men
17 October 2008 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Don't Go Near The Water is a film about those under-appreciated men of the second World War, those who served way in the rear echelon in the Navy's publicity department. They too, sacrificed and served their country in most unusual ways.

Hero of this piece and perfectly cast because of his gift for dead pan comedy timing is Glenn Ford, playing a Mister Roberts like officer assigned to the unit headed by Fred Clark. Actually Ford's a Roberts in reverse, he's already had his sea duty and now is assigned to this backwater of the war. He and Russ Tamblyn would like to get into action because it is in combat that promotions can be quickly earned. Not to mention they'd like to serve their country.

Now Clark's perfectly content where he is. He was a former advertising man in civilian life, so the Navy publicity unit is a perfect fit for him. He's even got far more leverage in 'disciplining' the men under his command. But he can be played and Ford does so like a piccolo.

Don't Go Near The Water has no real plot except for Ford's yeoman Earl Holliman falling for one of the Navy nurses, Anne Francis, and stealing her away from wolfish officer Jeff Richards. That's a romance that Ford's helping in every way he can despite those no fraternization policies between enlisted men and officers.

The film is a series of comic vignettes as the unit tries to deal with several non-military and military situations like a hero sailor played by Mickey Shaughnessy who can't control his language. I found that extremely true to life because back in those brief days when I was a weekend warrior, I remember those Anglo-Saxon expletives coming out just as frequently as they do from Shaughnessy. Still it won't do to have him on a bond tour with that coming out of him all the time, so Ford has the unenviable duty of cleaning his act up.

Ford's also taking time to romance island school teacher Gia Scala and he enlists her help in blackmailing an obnoxious war correspondent to help with building a new school house with the money he flashes around from his publisher. The correspondent is Keenan Wynn who thinks that Ensign Russ Tamblyn is his personal valet. No wonder Tamblyn wants to get to active duty.

And then there's the glamorous Eva Gabor who is a female correspondent who's been assigned to a forward area to cover the impending battle for Okinawa. As if Admiral Howard Smith hasn't enough troubles. He already has a low opinion of Clark and his outfit as a bunch of goldbrickers.

All in all it's a pretty funny service comedy and holds up well after over 50 years.


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