Monday, July 8, 2013

1960 - THE WACKIEST SHIP IN THE ARMY? , a war comedy from a different time.

Talk about a film made in a different era, The Wackiest Ship in the Army? is the polar opposite from MASH a film that came out 10 years later.  The plot has Jack Lemmon playing another Navy officer but nothing like his Ensign Pulver character from Mister Roberts.  Lemmon's the commander of a schooner trying to smuggle an Australian coast watcher onto a Japanese held island during World War II.

This film is filled with familiar TV and movie faces from the early 1960's chiefly Ricky Nelson playing the baby faced "rookie kid" assigned to help Lemmon.  Nelson's character is a lot more naive than his Rio Bravo character "Colorado" but that film was directed by Howard Hawks, this film is directed by someone named Richard Murphy.

Jack Lemmon is the major reason to watch this film he has to carry it almost entirely by himself.  This is Lemmon before he turned into "Jack Lemmon" a still fairly likable actor.  By the time he stars in Irma la Douce he essentially becomes a caricature of himself.

This film is reasonably funny with on location filming probably in Hawaii and a decent story to make it watchable.

99 minutes. 

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