WAR MOVIES….what happened?

so proudly we hailI’m not a huge war movie fan, but there are a few I love.   One of them is SO PROUDLY WE HAIL, about the nurses at Bataan.  In this film, Veronica Lake plays a nurse whose fiance was killed in the war.  At one point near the end, the Japanese are getting close to a tent where the nurses are and they’re about to be found and probably raped and killed, it’s a very scary moment.  Veronica silently takes a grenade and walks out, beautiful and frail and blonde, hair shining in the moonlight, attracting the Japanese soldiers until they flock around her, and she pulls the pin and explodes, killing them and the other nurses run to freedom.  Quite a film.

There are a couple of other war movies I love, but that one and DESTINATION TOKYO, are my two very favorites.   SINCE YOU WENT AWAY is one of my favorite WWII home front films, though I like many others.

destination tokyoDESTINATION TOKYO stars one of my very favorite actors in quite an uncharacteristic role, Cary Grant, who plans a submarine commander.  Ooops! I left out.. ‘a very handsome submarine commander!’

My links to the films are from Wikipedia because some of what they say there gives you a good glimpse into what the films are about but I have to comment on a few things they talk about at the end of each blurb about the film.   SO PROUDLY WE HAIL’s Wiki link talks about the film, then adds “Although the love-story plot line is the primary thrust of the film, the difficulties and emotional toll of war are also shown.”  Fair enough, but it’s WAR, does that need to be sad?   SINCE YOU WENT AWAY’s Wiki account is fine and then they add “Though sentimental, Since You Went Away is more somber and realistic about the carnage of war and the pain of separation than some other homefront movies made during World War II.”  That’s fair too, but I have not seen a WWII movie that didn’t deal with ‘carnage of war,’ have you?  Get the DIGS they have to get in at WAR in general?  Or maybe I’m too sensitive,  which I might be guilty of.

DESTINATION TOKYO’s blurb adds “The film’s screenwriter, Albert Maltz, was later brought before The House Committee on Un-American Activities on the premise that some lines of dialogue in the film reflected Communist sympathies.”   Those of you who know me know how sensitive I’d be to any lines remotely sympathetic to Communists and, trust me, nothing has ever stuck out at me that seemed like that (and I’ve probably seen that film 8 times). If any of you who know the film and did have lines stand out to you, please let me know.

john garfieldIn DESTINATION TOKYO, they despise the Japanese.  Let’s face it, that’s probably very realistic during the war and in the Pacific theater.   I’d take a chance here to say the Japanese probably hated the Westerners, right?  Our sailors even say “Japs!” which I doubt they could say today in any war film.  The dialogue is clearly about hating the enemy in this film and it kept making me think “Boy, with terrorists today, as hideous as they are, we’d NEVER portray sailors saying things like that against our enemies the Muslims in a 100 years…too politically incorrect!   The men talk about women’s curves and flashing eyes, and I thought that, today, that’d be considered sexist.   But isn’t it realistic?   And, as one of their sailors dies and has a burial at sea, Cary Grant reads from THE BIBLE, they say The Lord’s Prayer, and he even adds something like “in the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ” at the end of his words.  Imagine THAT being said today?   It would be considered far too offensive, right?  But in that film of 1944, the men bow their heads and pray for their dead mate.   It’s so touching!  One of the sailors even says he’d probably be considered an atheist  at the beginning of the film and another sailor says “I’ve never seen an atheist when times get tough.”  And, sure enough, the young sailor admits he’s not an atheist anymore at the end. Do you think anything like that would be said today?   It’s very touching to me, but no…..not today.

As I watched that great film (by the way, Wiki also adds that none of our subs actually did get into Tokyo Bay, kind of taking a bit of joy from my utter enjoyment of that film!),  I kept thinking “They wouldn’t say THAT today!” to some of those things I mention just above.   WHY?

My question is, yes, I KNOW it’s political correctness…but check out the sexism, the Christianity, using terms toward the enemy sailors realistically thought back then….it would NEVER HAPPEN!   Are we better or weaker for it? 

And, oh, it just solidified my disgust in women on submarines, big time.   Talk about an unhealthy situation for young men and women together.  Of course, I’m biased because I’m quite sure I couldn’t last five minutes on a submarine down under, which probably makes this film all the more intriguing to me.

Your thoughts?

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23 Responses to WAR MOVIES….what happened?

  1. I am so looking forward to Unbroken.
    They Were Expendable and The Longest Day.


  2. BTW, you may remember my son is a COB on a fast attack sub.
    He’s been on euro subs where they have women aboard.
    It’s worked so well on surface vessels (“targets”). Not.
    The Cary Grant sub movie with women aboard was Operation Petticoat.


  3. TexasFred says:

    A perfect example of what needs to be done in America today… 60/70 years ago we hated our enemies, today we apologize to them…


  4. bunkerville says:

    Hollyweird doesn’t mind making mega bucks on war, just saying..Lucky for them there are those willing to lay down their lives so they can still make these films.


  5. geeez2014 says:

    Ed, thanks for your favorites! I just heard Martha MacCallum say they leave out the part at the end of UNBROKEN, where Billy Graham influences him in UNBROKEN to come to God, and how his alcoholism from PTSD was virtually alleviated through that. No surprise they’d leave that out, I guess. I don’t know how anybody could stand being underwater with no really fresh air or blue skies for that long. And ya….I’d love to hear his take on women on board.

    Hi, TexasFred! EXACTLY! That’s what I kept thinking during that film. It was fascinating this morning to hear the CIA guy who did some of the waterboarding (or most of it?) tell about how they had medics and psychiatrists and so many people making sure nobody was really hurt, etc., and then the next story was about a BRUTAL attack on innocents by ISIS. The juxtaposition was glaring. And WE are apologizing!?!?!??

    Bunkerville, well said.


  6. Impertinent says:

    Here’s another war they’d rather not talk about. Hey Feinstein and you other quislings…remember this one?


  7. That’s disappointing.
    The story is diminished without his conversion.


  8. geeez2014 says:

    Imp; that’s one of the great forgotten stories, isn’t it. Ft Hood, Benghazi, Fast and Furious, IRS emails (what happened about that?), Sharyl Atkisson’s computer hackers haven’t been ID’d and she had hired experts 2 months ago to ‘get them’ (ya, right), NSA, etc etc etc.

    Ed….but imagine today’s Hollywood leaving that in? Sad, isn’t it. It’s apparently still a fabulous film, but ya….they had to take out the Christian slant; it may offend people, even if it IS the protagonist’s TRUTH. amazing.


  9. Baysider says:

    We’re weaker for it. Yeah, breaking down natural barriers to create confusion and, in the case of women on subs, diminish readiness.

    I hope Unbroken is still good. Hugh Hewitt interviewed Mr. Zamperini at length – just an amazing story, and wonderful that his testimony was with us for so long.

    I’ve not seen these movies you mentioned. But you notice how so many commonly used biblical references have been excised from the culture? I think ‘scapegoat’ is about the only one left, and I’ll bet few know where that came from. When was the last time you heard someone complimented as being a god fearing man e.g.?


  10. I remember well all the above war movies while I was in Jr. High and High schools during the war. Gas rationing, meat & butter rationing, air raid practices and block wardens. The good ‘ol days!
    The war ended while I was in High School so barely missed out of being in it, but Korea caught up to me! Back then, there were no Left or Right, only Americans, mad as hell at being attacked and that actually DID something about it. God! How I miss the old days.


  11. Kid says:

    Some I enjoyed were: Von Ruan”s Express, Dr Strangelove, Bridge Over the River Quai, Battle of the Bulge, The Great Escape, Duck Soup, Midway, The Longest Day, Mr Roberts…


  12. Impertinent says:

    @Bay..”Yeah, breaking down natural barriers to create confusion and, in the case of women on subs, diminish readiness.”

    Of course..this is what the hairy armpit fem-a-nazis want. You have 150 men stuck on a tube underwater for 6 months at a time…..and all they had before was their “wack-a-doodles” to worry about. Now…we throw women into that environment and expect what? Natural cravings and Horniess will disappear? That and add gays now…a freaking disaster IMO. Women DO NOT belong on Subs.. Or in foxholes either.



  13. What happened? Zinnism!


  14. geeez2014 says:

    Imp…what we don’t hear about is pregnancies in the service now….pregnant by other than the young man they married back home, etc etc. I guess we pay for all of that, of course. And, of course, they don’t broadcast it but I’ve heard it’s not uncommon, sadly.


  15. John M. Berger says:


    “add gays now…a freaking disaster IMO. Women DO NOT belong on Subs”

    If these changes in Submarine and other duty continue there will be a very different Navy and I don’t mean just subs. Cohesiveness is absolutely necessary in all branches of our military. I only spent about 24 hours aboard a submarine but I can say, for certain, without cohesion it will be impossible to function. The above quote portends a massive breach of such!


  16. Impertinent says:

    JMB….I’ve met some fine, fine, awesome, gifted female “aviators” ( a big difference between aviators and a mere pilot ) in my time in GA. Not, in my time in the AF. One of these female FAA examiners that I had check rides with….was fearless. On one ride in a Lear 60…she pulled my inside engine in a 45 degree tight turn…that rolled the Lear into a 110 degree bank! A scary and an almost impossible situation to have occur in 99% of a flights. I remember her laughing…I continued and all I thought about all I could do in that situation…I continued the roll and became inverted…after cutting all power to the engine I had left. And eventually rolled out right side up….I asked why she was laughing. She said…”I’ll bet you never knew you could roll a Lear like an F4E…!”

    On the other side of the coin…damn near my whole GA career was with former Naval Aviators…who told me that female “aviators” were the bane of the Navy. They weren’t allowed to fail a female cadet. They just couldn’t trap as well as the men. I have no doubt that women can sometimes out fly a man…..as my examiner was one of the rare ones…..but those women are few and far between. As Baysider once said….”we’re wired differently” is all.

    IMO women don’t have a roll in combat. One look at our readiness today tells me that we’ve sacrificed that squadron cohesiveness….for PC. And in war, which we’re in now…PC means dead aviators, soldiers and …airmen.


  17. Impertinent says:

    How many of you have Capital One Credit Cards? How many of you know that Samuel L. Jackson is their spokesman? How many of you have seen his racist, erroneous youtube rant on hands up don’t shoot bullshit? How many of you know that he doesn’t mean the producers or cine photographers that earn him a net worth of $170,000,000.00 annually? He means you…who use those CC cards to make his racist ass rich?


  18. geeez2014 says:

    John and Imp; I couldn’t agree more about women on subs. Actually, I’m worse; I don’t think they should be anywhere near combat, but that’s just me, I know a lot disagree with me. We need men on the ground and women can free good men up to do background work, mechanics, etc.

    I just saw the Samuel L Jackson rant yesterday, Imp; what a freakin’ HYPOCRITE. REAL disappointed in him. He needs some lessons from Morgan Freeman.


  19. Impertinent says:

    @Z..it’s all tribal Z..all tribal…except our tribes who built this GD country. You have Gutierrez….you have a Jack(SON”….you have a reversion to tribal warfare. If you have a spanish surname…who cares if you’re illegal….who cares if you’re a criminal. We are so screwed that I think we’re heading for a Bronson society.


  20. Kid says:

    IMP. Very few black actors more racist than jackson. I’d say none actually. he’s areal piece of work.

    Capitol One? Good God no.


  21. Baysider says:

    Imp, you’re on a roll today – totally agree! Especially women on subs. But then this is the crowd that pretends they can reverse the nature of human nature on EVERYTHING. If you throw enough of other peoples’ money at it, that is. And AOW, I love your coin, Zinnism. It sounds about as evil as it is.

    War movies? Give me The Great Escape, Patton, Letters from Iwo Jima, and Das Boot. I will admit I really loved Kelly’s Heroes — yes, a guilty pleasure.


  22. Will Hart says:

    Some of my favorites; Paths of Glory, From Here to Eternity, Zulu, Breaker Morant, Apocalypse Now, and The Bridge on the River Kwai.


  23. Capital One: “Whats in YOUR wallet?” Not mine, either!


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