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The Wackiest Ship in the Army (1960)

Approved  |   |  Comedy, War  |  29 December 1960 (USA)
6.2
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 1,334 users  
Reviews: 19 user | 5 critic

Lieutenant Rip Crandall is hoodwinked into taking command of the "Wackiest Ship in the Navy" - a real garbage scow with a crew of misfits who don't know a jib from a jigger. What none of ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (screen story) (as Herbert Margolis) , 2 more credits »
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Title: The Wackiest Ship in the Army (1960)

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
...
Ens. Tommy J. Hanson
...
Lt. Cmdr. Wilbur F. Vandewater
Chips Rafferty ...
Patterson
Tom Tully ...
Capt. McClung
Joby Baker ...
Josh Davidson
Warren Berlinger ...
Radioman 2nd Class A.J. 'Sparks' Sparks
Patricia Driscoll ...
Maggie
Mike Kellin ...
Chief Mate Jack MacCarthy
...
Lt. Dennis M. Foster
Alvy Moore ...
Seaman J. Johnson
Joseph Gallison ...
'Cameo' (as Joe Gallison)
Teru Shimada ...
Maj. Samada
George Shibata ...
Capt. Shigetsu
Edit

Storyline

Lieutenant Rip Crandall is hoodwinked into taking command of the "Wackiest Ship in the Navy" - a real garbage scow with a crew of misfits who don't know a jib from a jigger. What none of them knows, including Crandall, is that this ship has a very important top-secret mission to complete in waters patrolled by the Japanese fleet. Their mission will save hundreds of allied lives - if only they can get there in one piece. Written by A.L.Beneteau <albl@inforamp.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You'll crack your timbers when you see how the Navy sticks the Army sad sacks with the crumbiest ship afloat! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

29 December 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Armeijan hassuin laiva  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Eastman Color)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The original name of the boat in the movie was the "Fiesta". She was built in Hong Kong in 1932 entirely of teakwood. She was a 72 foot gaff-rigged schooner and came with a 165hp auxiliary diesel engine, weighed 28 net tons, drew 8 feet of water and could make 7.5 knots under power. She was also equipped with 3 tiled heads (bathrooms), two of them with showers, 1400 gallon fresh water tank, a 19 cubic foot deep freezer, and a 24 cubic foot refrigerator. Prior to the movie the Fiesta was owned by Martin J. Vitousek and his wife the former Beatrice Leiseder. (Source: The San Francisco Chronicle Sept. 14, 1952). See more »

Goofs

Several times during the movie the "Air Force" is mentioned. Naval aviation was listed in many wartime Navy documents and was referred to by Navy men as the Naval "Air Force." Navy men would have referred to the US Army Air Forces as the "Army Air Force" or (incorrectly) as the "Army Air Corps," a term officially phased out in mid-1941. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: If you remember Pearl Harbor, you'll recall that in the year that followed the Japanese were almost invincible. Early in 1943, however, they were checked. Stopped cold by the Marines at Guadalcanal, the Navy in the Coral Sea, and the Allied armies in New Guinea. This was a period of far-reaching decisions, desperate strategies, and incredibly daring counter-strokes - not the least of which involved two bright young naval officers...
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: ALLIED HEADQUARTERS BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA FEB. 1943 See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: City Limits (1992) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Richard Murphy's The Wackiest Ship in the Army
12 June 2002 | by (North Dakota) – See all my reviews

In this WWII comedy, Jack Lemmon plays a young lieutenant who

finally gets command of his own ship- a small sailboat with an

inexperienced crew. Rick Nelson is his second in command, and

the ship must sail. This lightweight comedy is not terribly funny, but

not bad, either.

The breezy feel of the film is helped by an almost complete lack of

plot. Lemmon takes the boat through dangerous waters watched

by the Japanese, picks up an Australian spy who tracks Japanese

navy positions from the jungle, and sails him to the jungle. The

ship is captured, but our heroes escape and return back to base.

Aside from the Japanese, the only other conflict is between

Lemmon and the ageless Richard Anderson, who plays a hard

nosed commander ready to take over the sailboat.

The film works mostly because of Lemmon. He is so good and so

likable here, you forget little things like a romantic subplot that

never pans out. Nelson even finds a chance to croon a song,

giving us a break from the loud, unsubtle musical score.

Despite the title, most of the humor here is derived from the men's

war situation; not anything terribly wacky happens. There are

laughs, two running gags involve people knocking themselves on

the head, and a funny one involving Lemmon's quest for a decent

cup of coffee. Another light moment that is not pounded into the

ground- the men dress as natives, complete with grass skirts and

coconut shell bras, to fool the enemy into thinking they are a local

trading ship. The scene is funny without being racist and offensive.

The suspense about the mission is often undermined by a

reliance on stock footage to show battle scenes. This is a comedy,

yet we are watching actual footage of war, and this is a little

unsettling. When director Murphy is allowed to shoot his own

action sequences, they work, especially the cruise through the

mined harbor.

"The Wackiest Ship in the Army" spawned a television show, and

that is about the level of the script. This is nothing that will change

your life, but watching Lemmon's comic skills and good nature

make this an enjoyable enough time filler. I slightly recommend it.

This is unrated, and contains some physical violence, some gun

violence, and mild adult situations.


4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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