Reviewed by: Brett Willis
|Featuring:||Cliff Robertson, Robert Culp, Ty Hardin, Robert Blake|
This is the story of the wartime Navy service of Lt.(J.G.) John F. Kennedy on a Plywood Torpedo (PT) boat.
In addition to Cliff Robertson as Kennedy, the cast includes Robert Culp, Ty Hardin (who later became an evangelist) and a young Robert Blake plus several recognizable character actors. There’s no plot in the usual sense, but the film gives us an idea what WWII service might have been like—some combat, some danger, plus long periods of just getting ready, staying ready and doing your duty. Some comic relief is provided by an enlisted man who’s always trying to put in a fix to get away from the front, and by an outwardly gruff career officer who has to beg to be sent closer to the front.
One packaged version of this video is set up to mimic an actual 1963 night at the movies; it includes newsreel footage (of the Kennedy assassination) plus a cartoon and some “previews” of other ’63 films.
There are a few d* and h* words and some combat violence, but nothing like the war movies being made today. Depending on a child’s age and prior movie viewing habits, this film could be used as an introductory lesson on the price of our freedom. If you get the “night at the movies” version, the largest amount of editing for young children will be needed in some of the other material rather than in the feature film itself.