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Richard Widmark plays a hardened cold-warrior and captain of the American destroyer USS Bedford. Sidney Poitier is a reporter given permission to interview the captain during a routine patrol. Poitier gets more than he bargained for when the Bedford discovers a Soviet sub in the depths and the captain begins a relentless pursuit, pushing his crew to the breaking point. This one's grim tension to the end. Written by
KC Hunt <firstname.lastname@example.org>
As the actions of the Captain become more obsessive, Munceford tells him "You're not chasing whales now!" This is a reference to Captain Ahab, the single-minded whaling captain in "Moby Dick" by Herman Melville, whose obsession leads to the destruction of his crew, and on whom the character of Captain Finlander was ultimately based. See more »
Some of the crew members are wearing British 38 pattern webbing belts (with a pouch on the rear presumably to cover up the buckles for the webbing straps). See more »
[after Finlander orders an anti-submarine rocket armed]
This is insane!
Now don't worry, Commodore. The Bedford'll never fire first. But if he fires one, I'll fire one.
[launching the rocket]
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Along the same lines as FailSafe this is a tense Cold War drama with a cat and mouse game going on between an iron willed Navy Captain and an essentially unseen Soviet submarine. Great performances all around are what make this a good film. Richard Widmark is great as the somewhat tyrannical ships skipper who has his crew drilled, trained and poised for all out war up to the breaking point. Sidney Poitier as always does another superb job as the journalist aboard to do a story of a Navy deployment and gets more than what was expected. Despite the fact that an individual like the Poitier character would not enjoy that much freedom aboard a US Naval vessel this motion picture is quite realistic. Martin Balsam and James MacArthur also put in outstanding performances with Balsam as a newly arrived unappreciated ships doctor and MacArthur as an Ensign who is dogged endlessly by his commanding officer.
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