Released – September, 1951
Directed By – Lloyd Bacon
Starring – Richard Widmark (Lt. Cmdr. John Lawrence), Dana Andrews (Chief Jake Flannigan), Gary Merrill (Lt. Cmdr. Pete Vincent), Jeffrey Hunter (“Pappy” Creighton).
Description – Uncle Sam’s underwater commandos!
This film is based on actual U.S. frogman operations against Japanese forces during World War II. It was the first movie of its kind and became an instant hit.
After the death of their former commander, a Navy Underwater Demolition Team is put in the charge of strict disciplanarian Lt. Cmdr. John Lawrence. The men are distrustful of their new commander and matters only get worse.
Questionable decisions and what seems to be a reluctance to participate in a dangerous mission cause the men to believe their new commander may be a coward. A continued series of perilous missions places the safety of the frogman directly in the hands of Cmdr. Lawrence who turns out to be anything but what the men had feared.
NOTABLE: This film was nominated for two Oscars; Best Writing, Motion Picture Story, and Best Cinematography, Black and White.
The United States frogman forces were later to become the Navy Seals.
All female roles in the film were written out as a result of the belief that the working conditions were too “riotous” for women.