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Wednesday, June 4, 2008


Don’t let the lighthearted name and cover art fool you. This isn’t the expected Navy comedy, but a straightforward dangerous task tale. James Garner is a fresh Navy Lieutenant whose initial assignment is an ‘impossible mission’ (he has to grab a code book off a ‘Jap’ controlled South Pacific island base), but first he’s got to get there. Enter tough-as-nails submarine captain Edmund O’Brien whose by-the-book ways may stop the mission right in its tracks. Then add to the mix a by-the-numbers Hollywood hack Gordon Douglas as meger, he doesn't have an original angle for either the story or the camera. But the damn formula story is more or less indestructible. Lots of submarine ‘pings’ to stir the soul and the usual world-at-war dangers both on the ship and, for Garner, on the well-manned Jap controlled island. One surprise comes from a nice supporting perf from Carleton Carpenter (in his last big screen credit) as O’Brien’s #2. Standard stuff.

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