Submarine Command

  • 1951
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Drama, War

Holden joined most of the male leads of the 1940s and 1950s by taking command of a submarine for a film. As the executive officer of the Tiger Shark on the last day of WW II, he is forced to make a crash dive when a squadron of Japanese planes attacks, leaving his wounded skipper and quartermaster on deck to drown. An hour later, word comes that the war...read more

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Holden joined most of the male leads of the 1940s and 1950s by taking command of a submarine for a film. As the executive officer of the Tiger Shark on the last day of WW II, he is forced to make a crash dive when a squadron of Japanese planes attacks, leaving his wounded skipper and

quartermaster on deck to drown. An hour later, word comes that the war is over. Although other officers tell Holden he did the right thing, his own conscience and his chief torpedoman, Bendix, torture him for his decision to dive. With the war over, the boat is decommissioned and Holden takes over

duties ashore. He is still plagued by Bendix and his own self-doubts. Although his wife, Olson, tries to understand and help him, she fails on both counts. Then the Korean War breaks out, and the Tiger Shark and Holden are pulled out of mothballs and sent off the coast of Korea. Holden performs a

few intrepid acts that restore his self-respect and gain him the admiration of the crew. The fourth and last teaming of Holden and Olson (the first was SUNSET BOULEVARD [1950]), the film is reasonably entertaining within the narrow confines of its genre, the sequences between the wars when Holden

battles conscience and boredom being the most interesting. The action sequences were little more than cliches familiar to anyone who has seen a few of these underwater dramas. During shooting, Holden and Taylor became buddies. Once, the pair, still in costume, walked over to the set where another

friend, Ronald Reagan, was making a picture and appeared in a crowd scene, taking home the minimum pay of an extra. On another occasion, the two performed a dangerous stunt that involved diving off a ship and swimming to the sub, throwing director Farrow into fits when he found out. Far from

Holden's best work, he still does an admirable job.

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Holden joined most of the male leads of the 1940s and 1950s by taking command of a submarine for a film. As the executive officer of the Tiger Shark on the last day of WW II, he is forced to make a crash dive when a squadron of Japanese planes attacks, lea… (more)

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