Operation Pacific (1951) Other movies recommended for you
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Plot: The submarine USS Thunderfish successfully completes a secret mission to rescue a group of orphans on a remote Pacific island. On the way back to Honolulu they encounter a Japanese aircraft carrier but the torpedoes they fire explode about halfway to the target, a recurring problem that has plagued… Runtime: 111 min Release Date: 27 Jan 1951
"Take 'er down!" is a line from the movie and from a real life submarine commander in WWII. (by Danz-2)
I was stationed on the submarine tender, "U.S.S. Howard W. Gilmore" during the Viet Nam War. It was there that I learned about Cdr. Howard W. Gilmore and the "U.S.S. Growler." The "Growler," under the command of Cdr. Gilmore, was on patrol in early 1942 when she came under attack by a Japanese gunboat. Gilmore was mortally wounded and as he lay on the bridge of the sub gave the command to "Take 'er down!" just as "Pop" did in "Operation Pacific" and thus saved the crew further casualties. He was awarded the Congressional Medal of <more>
Honor posthumously for his action. Also the "Growler" rammed the gunboat and bent the bow of the sub just as depicted in "Operation Pacific." I would be interested in knowing if the film used the Gilmore/"Growler" incident as its basis for the scene depicted with Ward Bond, and if there were other facts in the film based on real incidents.Thank you,
Talk about broad brush strokes -- there isn't an ounce of subtlety in this movie as far as the eye can see. But it's a classic post-WWII "sea picture", and it swaggers and struts just like The Duke himself. It's impossible to imagine anyone else starring in this picture.Wayne plays "Duke" Forrest, executive officer of the submarine Thunderfish, commanded by his mentor and friend "Pop", who you figure is wearing a Star Trek red shirt under his khakis by the second reel. Sure enough, Duke winds up captaining the "Thunder" while trying to patch <more>
things up with his Ex, the high-maintenance Patricia Neal. In one memorable scene she reads him the riot act about his behavior, while he stares at a point in space above her head, several miles away. You can almost hear him thinking, "Dames like this always got pot roast in the oven..."This film is a rather jarring counterpoint to realistic epics like "Das Boat" -- clearly OUR subs had it all -- climate control no one sweats , plenty of space enough for a boat-load of rescued Nuns with about 20 orphans -- each one more scrubbed and freckle-faced than the last , and enough interior lighting to make Martha Stewart jealous. The brave crew features the usual lily-white, WASP-y cross-section of America, featuring Junior "my Great Grandpappy was on the Merrimack!" , Jonesy a wisecracking Mike Dukakis lookalike and Lieutenant Larry, who sounds like a Cary Grant knockoff. The Chief, who obviously served as a cabin boy on the Ark, is along to keep everyone in line.Having said all that, this is a wonderful film to break out on Memorial Day, to honor the brave sailors who went into harm's way in glorified sewer pipes with busted torpedoes, many to remain "on patrol" for eternity. Big, loud and jingoistic, this film nevertheless has its heart in the right place.
A nifty submarine film...and an exceptional performance by Wayne. (by MartinHafer)
This movie is an excellent submarine movie that combines exciting and generally believable action along with a decent back-story. John Wayne is the second in command on a sub and he's become reacquainted with his ex-wife, Patricia Neal. His trying to win her back and his difficulties with expressing himself is handled more credibly than most Wayne characters, as he is vulnerable and more 3-dimensional than his usual self. As for the action itself, the movie spends a lot of time on a lesser-known aspect of US sub warfare--the fact that our torpedoes at the beginning of the war were often <more>
duds. And the subplot involving the death of the commander is interesting as well. About the only down-side is that, at times, the sub does rather extraordinary things that no sub ever did--such as sinking 3 ships in mere minutes--including a sub, destroyer and an aircraft carrier! With victories like that, we could have won the war in just a few weeks. BUT, considering this is counter-balanced with dud torpedoes and the destruction of a fellow sub, this is a little more realistic than the standard fare.PS--a cute part of the film is when the crew is watching the movie DESTINATION TOKYO with Cary Grant . One of the crewmen comments that this is a great movie but it was awfully short on realism. Ha.
The start of this movie starts out with a tragedy when the submarine commander, played very well if shortly, Ward Bond, is trapped on deck when the sub comes under attack. John Wayne is the executive officer and orders the submarine to dive leaving Ward Bond to die. The crew resents his actions and show it in certain ways. In the early part of the war the torpedoes were well known to have problems detonating when they hit a target. John Wayne's character, Gifford, is tasked with solving this problem. He does and the enemy ships start blowing up. Gifford also runs into his ex-wife, played <more>
by Patricia Neal. Sparks fly again and they appear to hook up again. Gifford and the sub go to sea again and of course are successful attacking the enemy.