7.3/10
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52 user 33 critic

Operation Petticoat (1959)

Approved | | Comedy, Romance, War | 1959 (UK)
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.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Lt. Dolores Crandall RN
...
...
...
Ens. Stovall (as Richard Sargent)
...
...
Robert Gist ...
...
Ernest Hunkle
George Dunn ...
The Prophet
Dick Crockett ...
Harmon
...
Lt. Reid RN
...
Lt. Colfax RN
Clarence Lung ...
Sgt. Ramon Gillardo (as Clarence E. Lung)
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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:

20,000 Laughs Under The Sea! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1959 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Sirenas y tiburones  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Ontario)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Eastman Color)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the memoir "Mislaid in Hollywood' by Joe Hyams, referred to in the biography "Cary Grant - A Class Apart" by Graham McCann, " . . . Grant found his burgeoning enthusiasm for his therapeutic use of LSD increasingly hard to contain, and, eventually, while he was shooting the movie "Operation Petticoat", he could hold back no longer. Two reporters - Joe Hyams and Lionel Crane - both prepared for the usual amusing but scrupulously bland Grant interview, were stunned to find him unusually relaxed, open and keen to share with them the extraordinary experiences he had undergone . . . He talked about his desperate desire to change his character so that he could be reunited with Betsy Drake." See more »

Goofs

During an air raid, several bombs go off near a truck Tony Curtis is driving. A cloud of smoke is shown coming up vertically at the driver's door while the background scene shows the truck is moving at a high speed. The wind created by the truck's forward motion should have blown the smoke horizontally. See more »

Quotes

Lt. Nicholas Holden: [Seeing Lt. Crandell and Sherman come out of the shower together] Good morning, that's a clever shower schedule you've worked out. Conserves water too.
Lt. Cmdr. Matt T. Sherman: Look, Lt. Crandell was having trouble with the shower head.
Lt. Nicholas Holden: It's your boat, sir.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Phineas and Ferb: What a Croc! (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

You Can't Win
(uncredited)
Sung by George Dunn (The Prophet)
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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