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Operation Petticoat (1959)

7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 8,089 users  
Reviews: 51 user | 33 critic

World War 2 comedy about a submarine commander who finds himself stuck with a decrepit (and pink) sub, a con-man executive officer and a group of army nurses.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Title: Operation Petticoat (1959)

Operation Petticoat (1959) on IMDb 7.3/10

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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It's hijinks on the high seas when a U.S. submarine has to take on a collection of female nurses. Somehow or another, the sub gets painted pink in the process.

Stars: Melinda Naud, Jim Varney, Richard Brestoff
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Joan O'Brien ...
Lt. Dolores Crandall RN
...
Gene Evans ...
...
Ens. Stovall (as Richard Sargent)
...
Robert F. Simon ...
Robert Gist ...
...
Ernest Hunkle
George Dunn ...
The Prophet
Dick Crockett ...
Harmon
Madlyn Rhue ...
Lt. Reid RN
...
Lt. Colfax RN
Clarence Lung ...
Sgt. Ramon Gillardo (as Clarence E. Lung)
Edit

Storyline

A submarine newly commissioned is damaged in the opening days of WW II. A captain, looking for a command insists he can get it to a dockyard and captain it. Going slowly to this site, they find a stranded group of Army nurses and must take them aboard. How bad can it get? Trying to get a primer coat on the sub, they have to mix white and red in order to have enough. When forced to flee the dock during an air attack, they find themselves with the world's only Pink submarine, still with 5 women in the tight quarters of a submarine. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It all started when they smuggled 5 girls aboard their submarine! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

18 December 1959 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Sirenas y tiburones  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Ontario)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

A submarine based at Cavite, the USS Seadragon, did go on patrol with a red paint job. Her original black paint was damaged by fire in the air raid, and ended up peeling off while she was on patrol. She ended up sinking three Japanese ships during the time her paint was peeling, leading Tokyo Rose to make broadcasts about "Red pirate submarines." See more »

Goofs

When Holden is stealing the pig, he falls down in the mud and clearly gets the seat of his uniform muddy. Yet when he is climbing into the truck, the trousers are clean. See more »

Quotes

Fox: [comes up the ladder] I found it! I found it! I found it! Look!
[holds up a water soaked box with something in it beyond recognition]
Chief Molumphry: I give up, what is it?
Fox: It's a cake my mother sent me.
Chief Molumphry: Oh, isn't that nice. Take it down to the cook. Maybe he'll warm it up for you.
[Fox leaves]
Chief Molumphry: Mothers. Why couldn't she send us something we need. Like an universal coupling joint.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Pink Panther Story (2003) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Top talent makes this a winner.
6 April 2004 | by (honolulu, hawaii) – See all my reviews

There's really no reason to expect that this easy-going military comedy should hold up so well after almost 50 years. While extremely popular as a Christmas release in '59, it then boasted two top box office stars to bring in the crowds, which most critics agreed were the primary attraction supporting some rather thin and predictable material. But the merits are considerably more than reviewers originally gave credit for, and the film endures as a cleverly crafted entertainment on several levels. Its uncomplicated premise accommodates humor less derived from incident than from character and situation, making it seem far less pretentious than most films of its kind. Service comedies of this period tend to follow a pattern set by MR. ROBERTS, which was based on a hugely successful stage play and quite reverent to those origins. PETTICOAT is far more spontaneous, so even if plot threads tend to be a bit familiar, its the delivery rather than the content which holds our attention. Of course it doesn't hurt to have Cary Grant at the peak of his powers, hitting all the right notes, balancing the role of naval officer with innate dedication combined with his own charismatic charm and seemingly effortless humor, a performance which is both naturalistic and funny. Curtis, too, had found his groove at this point (he had just completed his tour de force for Billy Wilder, SOME LIKE IT HOT) contributing just the right balance of ingenuousness and star-of-the-month savvy to make his `second banana' role a success. But the lion's share of the credit must go to Blake Edwards, then in the early stages of his most successful period as a master comedy craftsman, boisterous yet sophisticated, among the last of a breed of Hollywood stylists on the rise at a time when the old studio system was nearing its end.


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