6.9/10
1,622
20 user 16 critic

Wake Island (1942)

Approved | | Action, Drama, War | 11 August 1942 (USA)
December, 1941. With no hope of relief or re-supply, a small band of United States Marines tries to keep the Japanese Navy from capturing their island base.

Director:

John Farrow

Writers:

W.R. Burnett (screenplay), Frank Butler (screenplay)
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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Brian Donlevy ... Maj. Geoffrey Caton
Macdonald Carey ... Lt. Bruce Cameron
Robert Preston ... Pvt. Joe Doyle
William Bendix ... Pvt. Aloysius K. 'Smacksie' Randall
Albert Dekker ... Shad McClosky
Walter Abel ... Cmdr. Roberts
Mikhail Rasumny ... Ivan Probenzky
Rod Cameron ... Capt. Pete Lewis
Bill Goodwin ... Sgt. Higbee / Narrator
Damian O'Flynn ... Capt. Bill Patrick
Frank Albertson ... Johnny Rudd
Edit

Storyline

In November 1941, Major Caton takes command of the small Marine garrison on Wake Island. His tendency toward spit and polish upsets the men's tropical lassitude, but Pearl Harbor changes everything. Soon the island is attacked and the Marines pull together day by day; but how long can they hold out? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Tougher than Leather . . . Harder to Kill! Daring Americans Fighting Against All Odds! See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Japanese

Release Date:

11 August 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Heldenlegioen See more »

Filming Locations:

Salt Lake City, Utah, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$826,061 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

On December 11, Lt. Cmdr. WInfield S. Cunningham was asked by superiors in a coded message what he needed. The actual defiant message, "Send us more Japs" was never sent as such. A junior officer added the words "Send us" to the beginning of the coded reply and "more Japs" to the end in order to confuse Japanese code-breakers. When it was received it was misinterpreted as "Send us more Japs." See more »

Goofs

Wake island defenders did not have a dog. See more »

Quotes

Pvt. Aloysius K. 'Smacksie' Randall: Any you guys who don't like this hat, you can come out here and try to knock it off.
[looks at Doyle]
Pvt. Aloysius K. 'Smacksie' Randall: ... that includes you.
Pvt. Joe Doyle: I think you're beautiful. Go on, on your way, civilian!
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Century: America's Time: Homefront: 1941-1945 (1999) See more »

Soundtracks

Taps
(uncredited)
Composed by Gen. Daniel Butterfield 1862
Played during movie's opening.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Fun The First Time, A "Bomb" The Next
23 February 2006 | by ccthemovieman-1See all my reviews

I liked this a lot more the first viewing. Some half dozen years later, I bought it when the DVD came out and was very disappointed. It just wasn't as good as I had remembered.

The movie has its good points: interesting characters, enough action to satisfy and special effects that were pretty good for its day. A cast that has Brian Donlevy, William Bendix, Robert Preston, MacDonald Carey and Albert Dekker is pretty solid, too.

What kind of grated on me with the second viewing was the dumbness of the two leads, played by Bendix and Preston. These guys, frankly, were just too stupid and annoying. The other characters were more level-headed and fine to watch.

The first half hour drags, but if you can through that, it's pretty good. There are few nice scenes with men praying, too, something you wouldn't see today. In summary, a so-so war flick. One viewing is entertaining but two is too much.


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