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The Long Gray Line (1955)

Approved | | Biography, Comedy, Drama | 10 February 1955 (USA)
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.

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Writers:

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

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Capt. Herman J. Kohler
...
Kitty Carter
...
Charles 'Chuck' Dotson (as Phil Carey)
...
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Dwight Eisenhower
...
Abner 'Cherub' Overton
...
Dinny Maher
...
...
Capt. John Pershing
...
Mrs. Koehler (as Erin O'Brien Moore)
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:

Warms Your Heart! STIRS YOUR BLOOD! and fires your imagination!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

10 February 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

John Ford's The Long Gray Line  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,748,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$4,100,000, 31 December 1955
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Opening credits prologue: The United States Military Academy at West Point is 153 years old. This is the TRUE STORY of an enlisted man who was there for 50 of those years. His name is Marty Maher. See more »

Goofs

Marty and Mary did not live on West Point when first married as depicted in the film. They lived in the nearby town of Highland Falls. They were living in Highland Falls again when Mary died. The film shows her passing away on the front porch of their Army quarters. See more »

Quotes

Martin 'Marty' Maher: What is this place? Is it maybe a prison, or is it a looney house?
Cpl. Rudolph Heinz: This is the United States Military Academy.
Martin 'Marty' Maher: [glances around] What a fine ruin it would make!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in A Football Life: The Forward Pass (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Aura Lee
(or "Army Blue") (uncredited)
Music by George R. Poulton
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

One of Ford's Finest!!!
7 February 2003 | by See all my reviews

If you like Irish character studies you'll love this movie. This movie follows in flash back 50 years in the true-life story of Irish immigrant Martin Maher. Tyrone Power plays Martin wonderfully. When Martin arrives in America he takes a civilian waiter job at the US Military Academy at West Point. Docked for "breakage", he joins the Army and works at several different jobs at the Point. The last job being assistant to the "Master of the Sword" played by the very versatile Ford stock company player (Ward Bond). At West Point, Martin meets and marries the love of his life Mary O'Donnell marvelously brought to life by Maureen O'Hara. Martin and Mary setup housekeeping and are able to bring Martin's father Old Martin (Donald Crisp) and brother Dinny to America. When Old Martin first meets Mary he is impressed when he asks if she still `Has the Irish' and she is able to speak in Gaelic.

As the movie unfolds you will really care about Martin, Mary, old Martin and the cadets Martin helps through the Academy. Due to talent of the director John Ford and cast, the characters appear to be real people--not just a bunch of actors who made a movie. You'll be fascinated by the class "The Stars Fell On " (graduating class of Generals Eisenhower, Bradley, etc.) This movie will stir up patriotic feelings, but also shows the high cost of war. You will smile and just might shed a tear before this one is over. You will not regret the time spent with Martin Maher--and may find yourself thinking about this movie for a long time after you see it. This is indeed, one of Pappy Ford's finest.


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