To pacify 104 sex-starved male soldiers building an Arctic radar base, Army psychologist Vicki Loren suggests choosing one by lot to have a "perfect furlough" as selected by the men: three ... See full summary »
Three sailors on leave (Joe, Al and Davy) head for Paris with one thing on their minds. Joe pursues chanteuse Colette D'Avril who proves to be more than she appears; Davy is pursued by sexy... See full summary »
Ill-advised by a pal, a chemistry professor falsely claims he is an undercover FBI agent in order to cover-up his marital infidelity but his lie, although swallowed by his wife, gets him in trouble with the real FBI, the CIA and the KGB.
Shot by a jealous husband, Charley falls out a porthole and is lost at sea only to find himself returned as an attractive blond woman. His best friend is staying at his house as he puts ... See full summary »
New York tourist Tony Curtis falls asleep on a Southern California beach on his first night in the West and wakes up to The New Phantasmagoria--catamarans, surfers (including a dog), ... See full summary »
Race, love, and war. The Allies have landed in France, set up in a coastal town, where Lt. Sam Loggins, a serious guy from Manhattan's west side, falls hard for Monique Blair, an American raised in France. Loggins' sergeant, Britt Harris, a playboy from Jersey, also finds Monique attractive. She chooses one to love and the other to befriend after disclosing her parents' history and why she lives in France. The men say it makes no difference, a wedding is announced, and the soldiers face a dangerous mission behind enemy lines. But is everyone being truthful?Written by
My father owns a paperback edition of the Joe David Brown novel which inspired this film and I recall reading it many years ago. Ever since his Oscar triumph in FROM HERE TO ETERNITY (1953), Frank Sinatra tried to augment his typically light material with heavier stuff: in 1958, he had two of the latter back-to-back (along with Vincente Minnelli’s SOME CAME RUNNING) and, curiously enough, he finds himself with the less showier of the lead roles here.
Tony Curtis’ part as the smooth-talking but put-upon charmer is effectively an extension of his Sidney Falco in Alexander Mackendrick’s SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS (1957). The female roles are equally well filled: a lovely 19-year old Natalie Wood plays a young mulatto American raised in France who comes between Army “buddies” Sinatra and Curtis, while 35-year old Leora Dana is cast as Wood’s proud middle-aged mother (she must have quite impressed Sinatra because she was in SOME CAME RUNNING too – as Arthur Kennedy’s wife).
The film – backed by a fine score from Elmer Bernstein and including a jam session featuring Curtis and real-life jazz musicians – is well enough made scene by scene and certainly well acted, but the effect is slightly diluted by the unnecessary and ultra-soapy coda (Sinatra losing an arm, Dana dying, Wood gathering together and teaching war orphans – but especially the corny children’ song at the very end). The film is much more of a romantic melodrama than it is a war movie, but the few action sequences therein are good and well spread out throughout the film.
Delmer Daves may have been best renowned for his Westerns – but his very first shot as a director had actually come via a war movie, DESTINATION TOKYO (1943), and he eventually returned to the same territory intermittently with PRIDE OF THE MARINES (1945), TASK FORCE (1949) and, finally, KINGS GO FORTH itself.
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