6.7/10
1,369
26 user 3 critic

The Cockleshell Heroes (1955)

During World War II, German ships are "safely" docked upriver at Bordeaux, but the British send a team of kayakers to attack them.

Director:

José Ferrer

Writers:

Bryan Forbes (screenplay), Richard Maibaum (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In the first major naval battle of World War II, the British Navy must find and destroy a powerful German warship.

Directors: Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger
Stars: John Gregson, Anthony Quayle, Peter Finch
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

The attack by British submarines on the German battleship "Tirpitz" in a Norwegian fjord during the Second World War.

Director: Ralph Thomas
Stars: John Mills, John Gregson, Donald Sinden
The Cruel Sea (1953)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The World War II adventures of a British convoy escort ship and its officers.

Director: Charles Frend
Stars: Jack Hawkins, Donald Sinden, John Stratton
633 Squadron (1964)
War | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

An RAF squadron is assigned to knock out a German rocket fuel factory in Norway. The factory supplies fuel for the Nazi effort to launch rockets on England during D-Day.

Director: Walter Grauman
Stars: Cliff Robertson, George Chakiris, Maria Perschy
Action | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The World War II story of the British Navy's effort to defeat Nazi Germany's most powerful warship.

Director: Lewis Gilbert
Stars: Kenneth More, Dana Wynter, Carl Möhner
Biography | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Biopic of RAF Group Captain Douglas Bader who, after having lost both legs, flew a British fighter plane during WW2.

Director: Lewis Gilbert
Stars: Kenneth More, Muriel Pavlow, Lyndon Brook
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Richard Burton plays a Scottish Army officer put in charge of a disparate band of ANZAC troops on the perimeter of Tobruk with the German Army doing their best to dislodge them.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: Richard Burton, James Mason, Robert Newton
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The story of how the British attacked German dams in WWII by using an ingenious technique to drop bombs where they would be most effective.

Director: Michael Anderson
Stars: Richard Todd, Michael Redgrave, Ursula Jeans
Malta Story (1953)
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In WW2, the island of Malta, strategically located and vital to supply lines in the Mediterranean Sea, is fiercely attacked by the Germans but staunchly defended by the British.

Director: Brian Desmond Hurst
Stars: Alec Guinness, Jack Hawkins, Anthony Steel
Desert Patrol (1958)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Sent to destroy a Nazi petrol dump in the North African desert, a British commando team unexpectedly discovers a large Nazi tank unit and must inform the HQ in time.

Director: Guy Green
Stars: Richard Attenborough, John Gregson, Michael Craig
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Allied prisoners of various nationalities pool their resources to plan numerous escapes from an "escape-proof" German POW camp housed in a Medieval castle.

Director: Guy Hamilton
Stars: John Mills, Eric Portman, Christopher Rhodes
Drama | History | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

True story of three British POWs and their attempt to escape from Nazi Germany.

Directors: Jack Lee, Ian Dalrymple
Stars: Leo Genn, David Tomlinson, Anthony Steel
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
José Ferrer ... Major Geoffrey Stringer
Trevor Howard ... Captain Hugh Thompson
Dora Bryan ... Myrtle
Victor Maddern ... Marine Sgt. Craig
Anthony Newley ... Marine Clarke
David Lodge ... Marine Ruddock
Peter Arne ... Marine Corporal Stevens
Percy Herbert ... Marine Lomas
Graham Stewart Graham Stewart ... Marine Booth
John Fabian John Fabian ... Marine Cooney
John Van Eyssen John Van Eyssen ... Marine Bradley
Robert Desmond Robert Desmond ... Marine Todd
Walter Fitzgerald ... Gestapo Commandant
Karel Stepanek ... Assistant Gestapo Officer
Beatrice Campbell Beatrice Campbell ... Mrs. Ruddock
Edit

Storyline

A Royal Marine Reserve Major must work with a veteran Captain and a group of incorrigible recruits to attempt what is generally regarded as a suicide mission: the covert destruction of an entire German shipyard in occupied France. Written by Anthony Hughes <husnock31@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Ten Brave Men Started Out on the Most Desperate Adventure of the War!

Genres:

Action | War | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English | French | German

Release Date:

27 March 1956 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cockle Shell Heroes See more »

Filming Locations:

Portugal See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warwick Film Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Colour by) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The closing epilogue states: "The producers gratefully acknowledge the assistance given to them in the making of the film by the Royal Marines and other branches of the Royal Navy." See more »

Goofs

The German soldiers guarding the dockyard drive American jeeps. See more »

Quotes

Captain Thompson: Keep the line straight, Boys.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue 1: The Marines were formed 28th. October, 1664. On 29th. April, 1802, His Majesty, King George III, directed that they should be styled THE ROYAL MARINES See more »

Connections

Featured in Idol on Parade (1959) See more »

Soundtracks

The London I Love
Music by George Posford
Lyrics by Harold Purcell (uncredited)
Sung by Yana (uncredited)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

One of the Must See War Movies
9 October 2005 | by rudge49See all my reviews

This is one of my all time favorite war movies, first saw it in the 1950s. During what I call the "afterglow" of WWII we kids always played "Army" (any kid who didn't was probably considered a "pinko"), anyone who had served in WWII was 10 feet tall in our eyes. I grew up in an Anglophile family, so I was aware of Britain's war effort, and the fact that for nearly a year they carried the Allied war effort by themselves. Naturally when I reached adulthood and read the actual history I found this "Hollywierd" version hoked things up, unnecessarily in my opinion. The actual unit involved was called the RMBPD-Royal Marine Boom Patrol Detachment, that being a cover name of course. The actual commander was Major H.G. Hasler, nicknamed "Blondie" for his golden tresses (though at age 28, when the action occurs, he was prematurely bald.). Why Hispanic looking ( as he actually was ) Jose Ferrer was cast as Major Hasler-? Though Major Hasler served as a technical adviser to the film and he and Jose Ferrer hit it off, I have seen pictures of them together. The actual raid was called "Operation Frankton", Major Hasler had organized and trained his unit for such deep penetration raids both to inflict material damage on the Germans and to show them there were no safe havens for them. Why the names of the actual men were not used, I don't know, since only Hasler and his canoe mate Marine Sparks made it back to England, the others deserve to be memorialized. The scenes where the prospective members are required to land in German uniforms and then make their way back to the base is pure fiction, as is the Trevor Howard character of the embittered regular officer forced to play second fiddle to what the British call a "Territorial" (Reserve) or HO-Hostilities Only officer. Major Hasler was a career Royal Marine officer, had been on active duty since 1934 or so. I suppose a convention in WWII movies you have the hardened but Wise Old Regular and the Eager But Inexperienced Newcomer. Likewise the scene were one of the officers stand guard while one of the men beats up his cheating wife's paramour-another cliché.

That said, it is a great action movie, see it for that alone, then read the history, the movie will let you visualize the action better and appreciate the bravery of "Our Boys".


36 of 47 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 26 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed