Run Silent Run Deep (1958)

Run Silent Run Deep (1958), directed by Robert Wise.

To the dissatisfaction of First Officer Burt Lancaster -- who wanted the job -- new Captain Clark Gable has been put in command of the submarine USS Nerka. He drills the crew in unconventional torpedo techniques, longing to meet up with the Japanese destroyer that sank his last command.

Just how obsessive is the Old Man? Is he going to get them killed?

I haven't made a study of submarine films so I don't know if the standard ingredients originated here or were already standard tropes. They rig for "silent running" while playing blind tag with another sub. To simulate their own destruction they force oil, debris and even dead bodies out of the torpedo tubes, then hear the news announced by Tokyo Rose. They don't have a tense dive below crush depth.

These scenes are always tense and dramatically rewarding, whoever invented them.

I'd forgotten which film this was from: when going to battle stations the men pat the backside of a pinup model poster taped to the wall. For luck:

This one got good comments for technical accuracy. When the torpedos hit a ship it blows up real good and looks too Hollywood to me, but I wasn't there.

Note young Jack Warden and spot Don Rickles in his first film.

Music by Franz Waxman, photographed by Russell Harlan. Some real sub footage, but also model work and rear projection.

Available on Blu-ray from Kino.