During World War II, tugboats conduct what are called salvage missions, picking up disabled ships. Not well equipped with weaponry, the tugs are sitting ducks for enemy fire. As such, the crew working the tugs have precarious lives, many with deep seated emotional problems. Before the Americans join the war, ex-American military man David Ross is assigned to captain a tug for the British military. He is shown the ropes by an old friend, Captain Chris Ford. Chris currently shares a flat with a young beautiful Italian-Swiss woman named Stella, who came with the flat and who lives a reclusive life there. Chris is the latest in a long line of tugboat Captains who have lived there, each who has found another person to take over the flat and the associated looking after of Stella if anything is to happen to him. That person is given a key to the flat, the key only to be used if needed. The first in the series was Phillip Westerby, to whom Stella was to be married before Phillip was killed. ...Written by
Gary Cooper was writer and producer Carl Foreman's first choice for the lead. See more »
Damaged ship is sending SSS instead of SOS, but during WWII merchants ships in danger was instructed to send RRR instead of SOS if attacked by a Surface ship or a SSS if attacked by a submarine. See more »
This film tells the story about Tug Boats being utilized by England during 1941 in order to try and salvage damaged ships which were hit by German U Boats. David Ross, (William Holden) is an American assigned to one of these Tugs which are poorly armed, with guns that do not function when needed. David has not been on a tug in over ten years and meets up with an old chum named Capt. Chris Ford, (Trevor Howard) who shares an apartment with a very attractive gal named Stella, (Sophia Loren) who seems to like Tug Boat Captains as she has had many Captains who have died once she gives them a key to her apartment. The story makes a complete turn when Chris gives David a key to the apartment and that is when the trouble starts to happen. There is plenty of action, drama and romance. Great film with an outstanding story and Sophia Loren looked great at the age of 24 years. WOW
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