Operation Pettitcoat – 1959 – English
Film directed in 1959 by Blake Edwards, and starring Cary Grant, Tony Curtis, Joan O’Brien, Dina Merrill, Gene Evans, Dick Sargent, Virginia Gregg, Robert F. Simon, Robert Gist, Gavin MacLeod, George Dunn, Dick Crockett, Arthur O’Connell…
Synopsis: A submarine newly commissioned is damaged in the opening days of WW II. A captain, looking for a command insists he can get it to a dockyard and captain it. Going slowly to this site, they find a stranded group of Army nurses and must take them aboard. How bad can it get? Trying to get a primer coat on the sub, they have to mix white and red in order to have enough. When forced to flee the dock during an air attack, they find themselves with the world’s only Pink submarine, still with 5 women in the tight quarters of a submarine.
Review: I have read this film called “fluff” with which I can most certainly not agree. I first saw in in first run forty seven years ago and it remains just as fresh and delightful today after many more viewings. Tony Curtis is at his very best in this picture as a shore-side con man reassigned to sea duty aboard the USS Sea Tiger in the opening days of WWII. Suave Cary Grant is as always flawless in his performance as the captain of the badly damaged sub, trying to keep it in the war with bailing wire and sealing wax. Edwards uses tight camera shots, well cut to maintain the illusion of the claustrophobic conditions of the sub, and witty dialog to keep the plot rolling. The chemistry between the principals and the supporting cast make this one of the best ever. That Edwars would go on to many other comedy triumphs is not at all surprising after seeing this film. I must see for anyone with a funny bone.