Action in the North Atlantic

Synopsis: Lieutenant Joe Rossi is 1st Officer on a Liberty Ship in a great convoy bound from Halifax to Murmansk. After German subs crushed the convoy his ship loses the convoy and is heading alone to Murmansk. In spite of attacks by German planes and subs he get the ship safely to Murmansk...
Genre: Action, Drama, War
Production: Warner Home Video
126 min

My name is Joe Rossi.

I'm first mate on this tanker steaming

north to join the east- bound convoy,

and we got 100,000 barrels

of high- test gas slopping in our holds.

Stuff that makes tanks roar and planes fly.

Where are we heading? Well, this is war.

We're shipping under sealed orders,

but it's in the right direction.

Fog's coming in. Get it, mister?

Yeah, Skipper.

We've been running through patches of it

for half an hour.

The main bank's over there to port.

- See something, mister?

- No, it's my tooth again.

I got a mouth full of little dwarfs

with red- hot pickaxes.

You had that toothache

on our last voyage.

Why didn't you get it fixed

when we were in port?

When I'm in port, I want to see something

better- looking than a dentist.

- You rate a toothache.

- I'd say.

That's punishment for my sins.

It'd take more than a toothache

to pay for your sins.

The women.

Honolulu, Port Said, Cape Town.

Police in Singapore.

I reckon you've been in trouble

in every deep- water port in the world.

I can't think of any I missed.

- Fog' s gonna shut in thick before dawn.

- Yeah.


- Yes, sir?

- Pass the word along to the bos'n,

- I want a double lookout fore and aft.

- Aye, aye, sir.

Expecting trouble, sir?

You are here to learn, Parker.

Here's your first lesson.

It's an old law of the sea.

Don't ask questions

when you're given an order.

Yes, sir.

You know, that kid's gonna be all right.

Remember when you were

his age, Skipper?

Yes, mister. I remember.

When I was as old as Parker, I'd sailed

around the Horn in a square rigger.

I came up the fo'c'sle myself.

But we haven't got time

to train kids that way nowadays.

How else can you learn the sea?

By rigging a kid in a fancy cadet's uniform

and sticking his nose in a book?

Oh, why don't you give him a chance?

He'll catch on.

Catch on.

The difference between you and me,

Skipper, one of the differences is,

you remember the grief.

I remember the fun.

Next time we get in port,

see a dentist. First.

You know something?

The last tub I shipped out on was so old

that I found a pair of Christopher

Columbus' cufflinks in a locker.

- Did you have a gun on her?

- Certainly, it had a gun on her.

But, holy mackerel,

we'd ever had to fire it,

- the whole ship would have fallen apart.

- Okay. Deal me in.

This here belly wash gets worse everyday.

Well, if it's belly wash,

you don't have to drink it.

- All right then, it's hogwash.

- Here you go, Peaches. Lap her up, baby.

So you been robbing

my canned cow again?

What do you think we're gonna use

for milk this trip? Bilge water?

Oh, lay off, Caviar.

Peaches has gotta have her cream.

Now, you keep out of my galley,

or I'll cut your liver out

and feed it to the cat.

Excuse me. I've got an order for the bos'n.

Hey, Boats.

Captain's boy wants to see you.

- Bos'n, the Skipper...

- Hey, look out!

Now what?

Next time you come in here,

put your feet in your pocket.

I'm sorry. Bos'n, the Skipper wants

a double lookout fore and aft.

What's the matter? The old man nervous?

Send somebody else.

Don't break up the game.

Let's see, on the flip.

- Hey, what's the idea?

- Oh, you wouldn't have won, anyway.

- Lay off them cards.

- You take it, too, Larson.

You're squeezing us out

because we're losing.

You're sore 'cause I called you

when you had a pair of deuces.

Now, would I do a thing like that?

Would I?

- Yes.

- You certainly would.

How you getting along

with your books, professor?

- Swell, thanks.

- Hey, you better study good

or the Skipper'll put you in a corner

with a dunce cap.

Leave it open, sweetheart.

When I got it off Hatteras,

six guys was caught in the fo'c'sle

'cause the door buckled

and they couldn't bust her loose.

- Sorry.

- Hey, deal me in.

How did a Kansas hay- shaker like that

ever happen to go to sea?

Why does anybody ever go to sea?

Why does anybody go to...

Now, to be out here

in a rust- pot full of high- test gasoline,

a guy has to be muscle- bound

between the ears.

If a torpedo ever connected with this ship,

we'd go up like a match lighted

to cellophane. You ain't got a chance.

Boom. And you're in the hero department,

just like that.

And the next thing you know, you're

picking the Milky Way out of your ears.

- Okay. Okay. So what?

- What do you mean, okay?

Now, wait a minute.

I think you got the wrong angle.

The way I see it, if your ship's number

is up, you're gonna get it.

Yeah? And suppose my number ain't up?

Then, brother, torpedoes can connect

right where you're sitting,

and still nothing'll happen.

Well, I want no torpedoes where

I'm sitting. I'm a sensitive man, I am.

Oh, what do you know about it, anyway?

You carpenters,

you got sawdust for brains.


I was shipping out

when your buttons were safety pins.

I was in a tanker in the last war.

I got torpedoed so much,

I got water on the knee.

What made you ship out again?

Well, for years, I had my own business.

I got my own house, too.

Got a little money put away.

Then what're you doing out here

in this floating junk pile?

Well, I want to keep my business

and my house,

and I figure this is a smart way to do it.

We didn't ask for this war.

I know I didn't. None of us did.

- And now all of us are in it.

- Sure, sure.

With you in the war,

we got nothing to worry about.

- It's an open and shut proposition.

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John Howard Lawson

John Howard Lawson (September 25, 1894 – August 11, 1977) was an American writer. He was for several years head of the Hollywood division of the Communist Party USA. He was also the organization's cultural manager and answered directly to V.J. Jerome, the Party's New York-based cultural chief. He was the first president of the Writers Guild of America, West after the Screen Writers Guild divided into two regional organizations. Lawson was one of the Hollywood Ten, the first group of American film industry professionals to be blacklisted during the 1950s McCarthy era. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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