IMDb > The Wackiest Ship in the Army (1960)

The Wackiest Ship in the Army (1960) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

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Director:
Writers:
Richard Murphy (screenplay)
Herbert H. Margolis (screen story) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for The Wackiest Ship in the Army on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
29 December 1960 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
RiCKY NELSON Your No. 1 Singing Star hits the high C's in...The WACKiEST SHiP in the ARMY See more »
Plot:
Lieutenant Rip Crandall is hoodwinked into taking command of the "Wackiest Ship in the Navy" - a real... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
NewsDesk:
(4 articles)
User Reviews:
A film of two halves – neither of which are awful but neither of which are any good See more (18 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)

Jack Lemmon ... Lt. Rip Crandall

Ricky Nelson ... Ens. Tommy J. Hanson

John Lund ... 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

Richard Anderson ... Lt. Dennis M. Foster
Alvy Moore ... Seaman J. Johnson
Joseph Gallison ... 'Cameo' (as Joe Gallison)
Teru Shimada ... Maj. Samada
George Shibata ... Capt. Shigetsu
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Richard Quine ... Narrator
Phillip Adams ... Crewman (uncredited)

John Anderson ... Sailor (uncredited)
Tom Anthony ... Crewman (uncredited)

Nesdon Booth ... Chief Petty Officer (uncredited)
Naaman Brown ... Cpl. Goroka (uncredited)
Henry Faber ... (uncredited)
Fuji ... Japanese Sergeant (uncredited)
Clive Halliday ... Australian Major General (uncredited)
Gavin W. Harper ... Seaman (uncredited)
Dale Ishimoto ... Japanese Pilot (uncredited)

Roy Jenson ... Shark Bait - USS Echo Crewman (uncredited)
Lloyd Kino ... (uncredited)
Hudson Shotwell ... Adm. Hathaway (uncredited)
Sid Tomack ... Arthur, Bartender at Kangaroo Club (uncredited)
Richard Torrence ... Horse (uncredited)
Ron Veto ... Native (uncredited)
Russ Whiteman ... American Colonel (uncredited)
Mose Wilson ... Sailor (uncredited)
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Directed by
Richard Murphy 
 
Writing credits
Richard Murphy (screenplay)

Herbert H. Margolis (screen story) (as Herbert Margolis) &
William Raynor (screen story)

Herbert Carlson (story "Big Fella Wash-Wash")

Produced by
Fred Kohlmar .... producer
 
Original Music by
George Duning 
 
Cinematography by
Charles Lawton Jr. (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
Charles Nelson 
 
Art Direction by
Carl Anderson 
 
Set Decoration by
Louis Diage 
 
Makeup Department
Helen Hunt .... hair stylist
Ben Lane .... makeup supervisor
Robert J. Schiffer .... makeup artist (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Sam Nelson .... assistant director
 
Sound Department
George Cooper .... sound
Charles J. Rice .... recording supervisor
 
Stunts
Phil Adams .... stunts (uncredited)
Joe Byrne .... stunt double: Ricky Nelson (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Richard H. Kline .... camera operator (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Ralph James Hall .... assistant editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Arthur Morton .... orchestrator
 
Other crew
Lucius H. Chappell .... technical advisor (as Rear Admiral Lucius H. Chapple U.S. Navy Ret.)
Frances McDowell .... script supervisor (uncredited)
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
99 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Color (Eastman Color)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound Recording)
Certification:
Australia:G | Finland:K-8 | Germany:12 | UK:U | USA:Approved (certificate #19722)
Filming Locations:

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:
Factual errors: Unfortunatley at the time this movie is supposed to take place, the U.S. military was still segregated. Outside of segregated units, African-Americans would have only been serving as messmen in the Navy, not as Shore Patrol or Signalmen.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...
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FAQ

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6 out of 10 people found the following review useful.
A film of two halves – neither of which are awful but neither of which are any good, 10 July 2004
Author: bob the moo from United Kingdom

When Lieutenant Rip Crandall is offered his first command he jumps at the chance. However when he arrives at his 'ship' he finds that the Echo is more of a tub than a destroyer – being practically a yacht! With an inexperienced or inept crew and a second officer who has barely ever been on water for any length of time, Crandall is ready to drop out until guilt gets the better of him and he decides not to leave the young Ensign Hanson carrying the bag. After a few days of intensive and quite unsuccessful training, Crandall's ship sets off on its mission.

Starting out with a credit sequence and opening 10 minutes that suggests that the film may be as 'wacky' as the title suggests, it gradually settles into humour that is rather basic but passable before going for a more traditional plot that lacks humour and fails to really be that interesting. In some regards the turn away from the 'wacky' first few minutes was a relieve because I really don't like things that knowingly describe themselves as 'wacky' (personal ads with the words 'bubbly' or 'wacky' are generally my idea of hell) and the humour at the start of this just seemed too forced. However once it settles, it settles into humour that isn't very funny but is amiable enough. This continues with the usual 'training' stuff and 'mishaps' that passes for entertainment just about but then in the final 30/40 minutes it tries to actually have a plot – and falls to pieces as a result.

By this point I didn't really care about the plot more than a basic description and it was too late in the day to try and suddenly become engaging or exciting. The film also completely drops the humour (for what it was) and creates such a sudden change of tone that its like watching another film – something that damages it even further. Of course, its not awful, its just a film of two halves, neither of which are much cop but neither of which are really bad. The cast doesn't help much either since most of them are fairly average and just play to the level of the humour. Lemmon tries hard but cannot do much other than his usual stuff – which isn't as good when it is built on material like this. Nelson is about as wooden as you could get and only has presence when he is given a musical number – he was a singer after all and never really convinced me as an actor. The support cast are pretty average and you can see their basic characters in almost any other 'useless ensemble crew' movie that you can pick.

Overall this is a strange film that doesn't really work. It tries to be wacky and funny but the material is weak and it never really gets going, with the humour tailing off with every passing minute. When it eventually drops off altogether, the plot becomes more of a traditional war story but by then it is too hard to really care what is going on and it more or less fails too. As a total film it is a strange split; neither of the two halves really work but neither of them are bad. The end result is a film that is just about passable but one that will disappoint many who view it regardless of their expectations.

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