7.5/10
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62 user 27 critic

The Cruel Sea (1953)

Approved | | Drama, War | 19 August 1953 (USA)
Trailer
2:17 | Trailer
The World War II adventures of a British convoy escort ship and its officers.

Director:

Charles Frend

Writers:

Nicholas Monsarrat (by), Eric Ambler (screenplay)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jack Hawkins ... Ericson
Donald Sinden ... Lockhart
John Stratton ... Ferraby
Denholm Elliott ... Morell
John Warner John Warner ... Baker
Stanley Baker ... Bennett
Bruce Seton ... Tallow
Liam Redmond ... Watts
Virginia McKenna ... Julie Hallam
Moira Lister ... Elaine Morell
June Thorburn ... Doris Ferraby
Megs Jenkins ... Tallow's Sister
Meredith Edwards ... Yeoman Wells
Glyn Houston ... Phillips
Alec McCowen ... Tonbridge
Edit

Storyline

At the start of World War II, Cmdr. Ericson is assigned to convoy escort HMS Compass Rose with inexperienced officers and men just out of training. The winter seas make life miserable enough, but the men must also harden themselves to rescuing survivors of U-Boat attacks, while seldom able to strike back. Traumatic events afloat and ashore create a warm bond between the skipper and his first officer. Atmospheric sea footage. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Monsarrat's brilliant best seller comes surging to life See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 August 1953 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Det grymma havet See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)| Mono (Gaumont Kalee)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Dirk Bogarde claimed to have been offered a bit part in this film. See more »

Goofs

Liam Redmond plays the part of "Chief Engineering Rating\\C.E.R. WATTS." However, on at least two separate occasions both the ship's Captain Ericson (Jack Hawkins) and later Coxswain Tallow (Bruce Seton - 11th Baronet of Abercorn) clearly call him WATSON. See more »

Quotes

Lt. Cmdr. Ericson: [as Narrator] For us the Battle of the Atlantic was becoming a private war. If you were in it, you knew all about it. You knew how to keep watch on filthy nights, and how to go without sleep, how to bury the dead, and how to die without wasting anyone's time.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The 100 Greatest War Films (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

The Chestnut Tree
or "The Spreading Chestnut Tree" (uncredited)
Author unknown, perhaps traditional song
Sung by the sailors in the raft to keep awake
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Awesome movie
28 July 2009 | by SocalSamSee all my reviews

Powerful movie, made well, great character development. Compared to the summer of 2009 movies, including Watchmen and The Spirit, this movie is one you should watch. There are some continuity problems, but that happens whenever you use the ocean for a set. The characters though are solid and exist in a world gone bad. Leadership on board the ship achieve heroic levels in a universe where their work is not recognized. If you are sick of the crud that has been coming out of the movie production companies in 2009, this movie will bring you back to the love of movies and the stories they tell. I watch this movie and then watch Das Boot, these movies should be paired. Sadly, the current production houses are not capable of telling a good story, with a few exceptions like Lord of the Rings. The Watchmen, The Spirit and so forth are just an example of a story telling technology with no stories to tell. Watch this movie.


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