6.5/10
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11 user 6 critic

Operation Mad Ball (1957)

In post-WW2 France, U.S. Army hospital private Hogan and Captain Locke try to outwit one another on issues such as wooing pretty nurses, accounting for missing medical supplies, organizing unauthorized dances and influencing their C.O.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Pvt. Hogan
...
Capt. Paul Lock
...
...
Col. Rousch
...
...
...
Pvt. Widowskas
...
Cpl. Berryman
...
Pvt. Grimes
Sheridan Comerate ...
Sgt. Wilson
...
Ozark
Jeanne Manet ...
Madame LaFour
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Storyline

Private Hogan must raise his ability to scheme and plot to a new level to put on a madcap dance to celebrate the closing of an Army surgical hospital in post WWII France while evading the stickler-for-details Captain Locke - and win the heart to the beautiful nurse Lieutenant Betty Bixby. Written by Rick Munoz <munozrd@mymail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Real Battle for the Bulges! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | War

Certificate:

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Details

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Language:

|

Release Date:

17 August 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Mad Ball  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

5' 2" Mickey Rooney dances with 5' 8" Marilyn Hanold, perhaps an intentional reprise of Rooney's scene in the 1946 picture, "Love Laughs at Andy Hardy," in which he dances with 6' 2"" Dorothy Ford. See more »

Goofs

The x-ray of the abdomen showing the duodenal ulcer is held up and looked at backwards each time. See more »

Connections

Referenced in What's My Line?: Episode dated 8 September 1957 (1957) See more »

Soundtracks

Pennies from Heaven
(uncredited)
Music by Arthur Johnston
Played during the party preparation and at the ball
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User Reviews

 
Needs Rediscovery
24 January 2009 | by (Claremont,USA) – See all my reviews

What breaks down military discipline faster than pull from the opposite sex. But that's what's happening to the enlisted men of a hospital detachment US Army with all those fetching nurse officers next to them. It's France right after the war and the boys are getting restless. The trouble is that Capt. Locke (Kovacs) is a pompous stickler for discipline, while mastermind Pvt. Hogan (Lemmon) schemes to let nature take its course. It's a hilarious battle between enlisted men and officers. Can fast-talking Hogan put on his mad-ball mixer before killjoy Locke can foil his romantic plans. Both comedians are in fine form, making this a service comedy whose modest budget and b&w photography probably got lost in the mix of the time. Too bad, because the movie's fast paced, full of clever situations, with an attractive and lively cast.

Kovacs and Lemmon are a great pairing, showing again how much delicious humbug was lost in that tragic Kovacs auto accident. Support comes through, as well— a demure Kathryn Grant as the wide-eyed lieutenant, a cranky Dick York as the frustrated corporal, and a rhyming Mickey Rooney as the "twiddle-de-de, it must be me" logistics sergeant—all orchestrated by up-and-coming director Richard Quine. Anyway, this is a good chance to catch up with the whole madcap bunch in a movie that remains a genuine sleeper. Now if I could just figure out what the heck an ocarina is.


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