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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best American WWII submarine movie
There are a relative few American movies that cover submarine activities during WWII. 'Operation Petticoat' is one but it can not be taken as fully representative, and this is another and probably the best!

First owned on Betamax, I now have it on DVD. I have also seen it many times on TV. Unlike British examples of which 'We Dive At Dawn' is probably the best,...
Published on 14 April 2012 by Andy_atGC

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Torpedo Rubbish
The whole basis of this movie is that Captain Glenn Ford is out to sink the Japanese carrier Shinaro - presumably the real Shinano sunk by Archerfish - but the cunning Japanese run a cargo ship as a shield to protect the carrier. Not only a shield but one containing his captured wife & child. This scenario only works given two distinct & highly improbable "ifs" IF the...
Published on 15 July 2012 by Hugh McPhilemy


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best American WWII submarine movie, 14 April 2012
By 
Andy_atGC (London UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
There are a relative few American movies that cover submarine activities during WWII. 'Operation Petticoat' is one but it can not be taken as fully representative, and this is another and probably the best!

First owned on Betamax, I now have it on DVD. I have also seen it many times on TV. Unlike British examples of which 'We Dive At Dawn' is probably the best, the movie shows operationa in the Pacific which, because of the larger distances and areas involved, meant that contact with Japanese vessels was rather less frequent than their British compatriots would experience in their Atlantic activities.

The Atlantic war was confined to some areas of the North Sea, the English Channel, the Bristol Channel across to the Southern Irish coast and then the convoy routes, which were relatively few. Encounters with the enemy were relatively many until that time in 1943 when the tables began to turn and German losses grew exponentially, until no longer sustainable. From that point onwards, German naval forces rarely ventured out to sea.

The Pacific situation was rather different. Enemy encounters were fewer, more concentrated and dramatic, and more destructive for both sides. Again, the tide turned after the Battle of Midway, and it was only then that Japanese losses became unsustainable.

The story here concerns a journey into Tokyo Bay to sink a large Japanese aircraft carrier. All is not quite so simple, as the submarine captain's wife and child were captured by the Japanese and are held on board a small ship that is being used to shield the larger warship, which has to be sunk. The submarine captain falls ill and suffers from a breakdown and the First Officer has to assume many of the Captain's duties. If and when to launch its torpedoes and who is to initiate the attack are the main questions. Much of the film concentrates on that period.

Although a good example, it does not quite have the atmosphere, or show so well how the crew works under pressure, as does the later 'Das Boot', which serves as a perfect example of the genre to all.

Still enjoyable after many viewings. An excellent movie.

As a postscript, I will add that Glenn Ford, unlike John Wayne and some others, had the courage to actually go to war during WWII. I cannot now recall which service he was with although I believe it may have been the Navy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Two man movie in Pevney's undervalued submarine drama., 23 Mar. 2011
By 
Spike Owen "John Rouse Merriott Chard" (Birmingham, England.) - See all my reviews
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The Pacific, 1942, and Submarine commander Lt. Cmdr. Barney Doyle (Glenn Ford) is pursuing the Japanese ship that led the attack on Pearl Harbor back to Tokyo, where to all intents and purposes, he plans to enact revenge. But there's a major problem in the form of a freighter that is being used as a screen in front of the ship. For this freighter houses American prisoners of war, among them Doyle's own wife and child.

A well put together psychological thriller by director Joseph Pevney that is formed from a novel by Richard Sale {who co-writes the screenplay with William Wister Haines}. Tho the usual problems that exist with WW2 film's from this era are evident here {racist undertones, jingoistic sloganeering & hierarchy back slapping}, Torpedo Run manages to break away from its inheritance to become a taut involving aquatic drama fit to be named alongside the best in the submarine sub-genre of war movies.

Glenn Ford's performance is well layered and credible. Few actors from his generation are as undervalued for playing personally conflicted characters as he is, and here as Doyle he is on top characterisation form. He is ably supported by Ernest Borgnine as Lt. Archer 'Archie' Sloan, Doyle's right hand man, friend and professional conscious. It's with the two actors that the plot rightly focuses on, but this sadly puts the supporting characters in the shade. Thus the one truly important thing lacking from the piece is a total group dynamic expose. But thanks to the strong lead performances, and Pevney's no tricks directing, the film survives its failing. There's also added weight thrown into the narrative with the use of flashbacks to show how Doyle's relationship with his wife evolved. This helps us to be privy to Doyle's torment as he must make a career and life altering decision in the midst of war. The action is of good quality, especially the eventual showdown between the rivals. And as one who personally likes to see the forgotten art of model work used effectively, this film also scores high on the exciting scale for like minded film fans.

Far from perfect for sure, but there's a much to admire and be involved with to make it a solid recommend to fans of WW2 human dramas. 7/10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "It's Not as Cold as Brighton in August", 11 May 2014
By 
Bob Salter "Captain Spindrift" (Wiltshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Torpedo Run (El Ultimo Torpedo) (Spanish Import) (DVD)
The fifties provided us with a steady trickle of submarine movies. John Wayne starred in "Operation Pacific"(50), Robert Mitchum and Curt Jurgens in "The Enemy Below"(57) and Clark Gable and Burt Lancaster sparred against each other in "Run Silent Run Deep"(58). "Torpedo Run"(58), came out on the back of these, which was probably not great timing. This B-grade picture, unusually filmed in color and Cinema-Scope, struggled against those Hollywood heavyweights and did not make back its production costs. A pity because it is a very worthy effort that deserved better than to disappear onto midweek afternoon TV on channel Zog!

The film seems to be loosely based on the sinking of the Japanese aircraft carrier Shinano by the American submarine USS Archerfish in World War Two. Glenn Ford is the commander of the American submarine Grayfish, ably supported by his second in command played by Ernest Borgnine. The two have a score to settle with the Japanese aircraft carrier Shinaru. To do so they proceed deep into the very heart of Japanese waters, a place not for the faint hearted. Ford also has inner demons to fight and the growing enmity between himself and Borgnine.

The plot is not exactly original, with sub movies tending to follow similar paths. In a sub, all roads tend to lead to Rome, A very confined Rome! Much is made of the tenseness between crew members in such a confined space, and that has a ring of truth to it! This one is no different! Depth charges come raining down, its up periscope, torpedos run straight and true and those prickly mines need dodging. It's all in a days work! Not one I would have volunteered for I might add! Time to make a sharp exit methinks! The possibility of a watery grave in the oceans depths was always a real one for those guys! The visual effects are laughable by todays standards, and it comes as a shock to find out it was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects. With ships looking like miniature toy boats in a bathtub, I was surprised that a yellow duck didn't glide by in between torpedos. I guess you just have to remember that special effects was still in the stone age at that time. As with other sub movies the lighting tends to give it a studio look.

Having said all that, I actually like the film! It's the sub film that sticks in my mind more than any of the others! I find it hard to say exactly why, but I'll give it a shot. It might help me understand why! Firstly Ford and Borgnine are two first rate A grade Hollywood actors through and through. They can seem convincing with the flimsiest of plots. The two have a few lively exchanges without reaching the hysteria levels Gable and Lancaster reached in "Run Silent Run Deep". As it happens the plot is not all that bad. Ford's angst ridden character is fleshed out well, and suffice to say he has good reason for such angst! There are flashbacks that paint a helpful background, but not so much as to distract from the action. There is also an interesting scene involving the use of Momsen lungs which seems unique to this film. The support cast is flimsy but L Q Jones shows his familiar face and there is the strange sight of a young Robert Hardy on board as a Royal Navy Lieutenant on secondment. He gets the best line in the movie. He is up to his chest in freezing water and is asked "Are you cold". He replies "Its not as cold as Brighton in August". Good lad!

The film does have a strong boys own appeal to it, which is perhaps the main reason I like it. I'm still a kid at heart, although I look so b****y old! There is a lot of improbable nonsense I am sure. Would a good Commander take a pot shot at a carrier whilst risking the lives of civilians in a human shield ship alongside? There are a few others I might mention, but there is not a lot of point. It's just a film, so if the truth gets stretched a tad, then so what, so long as they don't take the mickey! Oddly enough I read a review from an ex submariner who said it was the most realistic of all the sub movies. High praise indeed and out of the horses mouth! Given it's limited budget this is a good effort worthy of four stars.
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5.0 out of 5 stars a great film, 5 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: Torpedo Run (El Ultimo Torpedo) (Spanish Import) (DVD)
I did have problems converting this dvd over from Spanish to English being as the sub titles and words had to be changed over to English , but the dvd was a really good film with two very good American actors , playing and taking the lead,. A great submarine film,
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good, 16 May 2013
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Haven't watched this yet as I bought it for my husband. Looking forward to seeing it! He tells me it should be good!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Torpedo Rubbish, 15 July 2012
By 
Hugh McPhilemy (Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
The whole basis of this movie is that Captain Glenn Ford is out to sink the Japanese carrier Shinaro - presumably the real Shinano sunk by Archerfish - but the cunning Japanese run a cargo ship as a shield to protect the carrier. Not only a shield but one containing his captured wife & child. This scenario only works given two distinct & highly improbable "ifs" IF the Japenese know which direction the submarine attack will come from in order to position the shield,and IF Captain Glenn Ford is so stupid that he does not know that torpedoes can be set to a preset depth i.e set to run under the shield & hit the carrier. The crucial scene in the movie where Ford & Borgnine argue about firing on the carrier,to kill or not to kill his family is plainly ridiculous,as neither seems to know basic torpedo fuctions.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WAR TIME DRAMA, 20 May 2011
By 
B. C. Lapping - See all my reviews
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TYPICAL WORLD WAR II DRAMA WITH THE CAPTAIN OF AN AMERICAN SUB IN A DILEMA. GLEN FORD GIVES A LOW KEY VIEW OF EVENTS, BUT ERNEST BORGNINE IS THE BEST ACTOR!!! A YOUNG ROBERT HARDY GIVES A PART SHOWING. THE REAL STARS ARE THE MODEL SUBS AND DEPTH CHARGES. A GOOD WATCH.
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