The submarine USS Thunderfish successfully completes a secret mission to rescue a group of orphans on a remote Pacific island. On the way back to Honolulu they encounter a Japanese aircraft carrier but the torpedoes they fire explode about halfway to the target, a recurring problem that has plagued the submarine fleet for some time. The Thunderfish's XO, Duke Gifford runs into his ex-wife and Navy nurse Mary Stuart at the hospital. There's still a spark between them but the boat is sent out on another mission before anything is resolved. When Gifford's good friend and captain, Pop Perry, is killed Gifford believe it's his fault. A inquiry clears him and after he and his men solve the problem of the misfiring torpedoes, they set out to sea.
He's Skipper "Duke" Gifford Who Could Put A Torpedo Through A Needle...And Sew Up A Date With A Laugh!
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Did You Know?
The problem with the torpedoes depicted in the movie was actually one of several problems the USN experienced with its torpedoes. In addition to the firing pins their magnetic detonators were unreliable as was the torpedo's ability to maintain correct depth. The torpedo was designed to either strike the target directly or pass under the target and detonate under the keel thus breaking the ship's back. If the torpedo ran too shallow it struck the target, and given the firing pin defect, may not detonate. If the torpedo ran too deep the magnetic trigger could not detect the ships magnetic field thus passing under the ship without detonating. The torpedoes were so unreliable that multiple torpedoes were fired at each target in a "spread" such that the ship's stern, bow, and midships were each targeted in the hope that one would find its target AND detonate. Returning from a patrol having fired all 24 torpedoes resulting in 3 or 4 enemy ships sunk was considered a very good patrol, one to be proud of and even brag about. The USN Bureau of Ordnance (BuOrd) was responsible for the development and testing of USN torpedoes. Even though the defects were obvious to everyone who fired the weapon in combat, BuOrd's insistence that the torpedoes were without defect bordered on the criminal. Their pigheadedness resulted in delaying the deployment of reliable torpedoes by at least two years. See more
As the sub is attempting to dive after discovering that the ship they had attacked was a Q-ship. The Captain and the inside of the conning tower is hit by bullets, not bullets that had penetrated the steel that made up the metal of the conning tower. Those bullets would have had to come from behind and above. And the Q-ship was not high enough to fire down on them and hit them behind the nearly chest-high bridge enclosure. The gun would have had to have come from behind, and the Q-ship was in front of them. Also after the captain was hit, a crewman came back up out of the conning tower hatch to attempt to pull the captain below. He too was hit by machine gun fire. Something that would have been impossible by anything but an attacking airplane. See more
Take her down!
In keeping with the submarine theme of the film: at the very start, we see a submarine periscope break the surface of the sea, then we see an officer looking into the view-port of the periscope, then we see the opening credits appear, as if being viewed through a periscope. See more
West German version was edited by ca. 13 minutes. German DVD release contains this cut version and the original US version. See more
Features Destination Tokyo
It Can't Be Wrong
Music by Max Steiner
Played at the restaurant/club See more