Monday, September 9, 2013

Destroyer (1943)

Director: William A. Seiter

Writers: Borden Chase, Lewis Meltzer, Frank Wead

Composer: Anthony Collins

Starring: Edward G. Robinson, Glenn Ford, Marguerite Chapman, Edgar Buchanan, Leo Gorcey, Regis Toomey, Edward Brophy, Warren Ashe

More info: IMDb

Tagline: You'll Always Remember . . . And Never Forget . . . Destroyer

Plot: Flag waving story of a new American destroyer, the JOHN PAUL JONES, from the day her keel is laid, to what was very nearly her last voyage. Among the crew, is Steve Boleslavski, a shipyard welder that helped build her, who reenlists, with his old rank of Chief bosons mate. After failing her sea trials, she is assigned to the mail run, until caught up in a disparate battle with a Japanese sub. After getting torpedoed, and on the verge of sinking, the Captain, and crew hatch a plan to try and save the ship, and destroy the sub.

My rating: 8.5/10

Will I watch it again? Of course, it's Eddie G.!

What starts out as a shamelessly fluffy piece of flag waving propaganda (but just for the first few minutes) ends up being a fantastic, rousing film. Yeah, it's got what you'd expect for a WWII made right in the middle of it but it's got some great performances and it's a heck of a lot of fun.  OK, I teared up twice.  Once during Robinson's powerful telling of the tale of the first U.S. Naval victory won by John Paul Jones (he could have been lying his ass off and I wouldn't know or care - great speech) and then at the end which gave me a vibe like at the end of (haha, one of the ends of) LOTR: RETURN OF THE KING ().  The only thing I would've improved is the score.  It was LOADED with variations of Blow the Man Down and Ladies of Spain.  Ugh.  Just too much.  But the rest of the movie kicks ass.

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