7.2/10
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45 user 16 critic

The Long Gray Line (1955)

Approved | | Biography, Comedy, Drama | 4 January 1955 (Japan)
Trailer
4:28 | Trailer
In 1898, Irish immigrant Martin Maher is hired as a civilian employee at West Point where, during a 50-year career, he rises to the rank of NCO and instructor.

Director:

John Ford

Writers:

Edward Hope (screenplay), Marty Maher (based upon "Bringing Up the Brass" by) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tyrone Power ... Martin 'Marty' Maher
Maureen O'Hara ... Mary O'Donnell
Robert Francis ... James N. Sundstrom Jr.
Donald Crisp ... Old Martin
Ward Bond ... Capt. Herman J. Kohler
Betsy Palmer ... Kitty Carter
Philip Carey ... Charles 'Chuck' Dotson (as Phil Carey)
William Leslie ... James Nilsson 'Red' Sundstrom
Harry Carey Jr. ... Dwight D. Eisenhower
Patrick Wayne ... Abner 'Cherub' Overton
Sean McClory ... Dinny Maher
Peter Graves ... Cpl. Rudolph Heinz
Milburn Stone ... Capt. John Pershing
Erin O'Brien-Moore ... Mrs. Koehler (as Erin O'Brien Moore)
Walter Ehlers Walter Ehlers ... Mike Shannon (as Walter D. Ehlers)
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Storyline

The life story of a salt-of-the-earth Irish immigrant, who becomes an Army Noncommissioned Officer and spends his 50 year career at the United States Military Academy at West Point. This includes his job-related experiences as well as his family life and the relationships he develops with young cadets whom he befriends. Based on the life of a real person. Written by Dennis Huffman<dhuffman11@kc.rr.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A Great Place! A Great Guy! A Great Picture! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Average Shot Length (ASL) = 13 seconds See more »

Goofs

Red's Medal of Honor that Kitty shows to Marty and Mary is the current design that goes around the neck. In the story, Red earned it during World War I and at that time the Medal of Honor was on a suspension ribbon like most other US medals. It wouldn't be redesigned for around the neck wear until 1944. See more »

Quotes

Jim O'Carberry: This is Marty Maher. Whitey Larson.
Martin 'Marty' Maher: How do you do, sir?
Jim O'Carberry: If you have any trouble with horses, drop around and see Marty.
Whitey Larson: But he's in the infantry!
Jim O'Carberry: Well naturally! He knows horses. You don't think they'd put him in the cavalry, do ya?
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Connections

Referenced in AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Jack Lemmon (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

Color Guard
(uncredited)
Music by Francis Resta
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User Reviews

All Ford and all heart
6 February 2000 | by BobLibSee all my reviews

You could call "The Long Grey Line" an affectionate tribute by one American institution to another: John Ford to West Point. All the Fordian elements, unashamed sentimentality, boisterious comedy, stark tragedy, are all here, and Ford and his actors convey them all beautifully.

And what actors! Tyrone Power finally proved that he could act in his moving portrayal of Martin Maher, a real-life West Point legend who started out as a fresh-off-the-boat waiter and wound up as the Academy's much-venerated Master of the Sword. Maher died in 1961 at age eighty-four, just as an era he represented was dying, too. Maureen O'Hara gives her usual strong portrayal as his devoted wife, likewise Donald Crisp as his father. Two of the most beloved members of the Ford stock company are here, too. Ward Bond playes Captain Koehler, the previous Master of the Sword who takes young Martin under his wing. And Harry Carey, Jr. has a good spot as the young Dwight Eisenhower, who was going bald even then and trying to stop it with hair-restorer.

A military "Goodbye, Mr. Chips" this may be, but as a heartfelt, human tribute to the Point and the men who made it, as well as good, overlooked Ford, this film is a hidden treasure.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Irish

Release Date:

4 January 1955 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

John Ford's The Long Gray Line See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,748,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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