Synopsis by Mark Deming
John Ford directed this undersea adventure from the early days of the sound era; it features talking sequences along silent passages with intertitles. After a brief shore leave in Singapore, where sailors have the opportunity to slake their thirsts for both liquor and women, the crew of a U.S. Navy S-13 submarine is ordered back to duty (with many still drunk) in hopes of getting into safer waters before rough weather hits. In the midst of a storm, the sub collides with a ship and starts to sink; the S-13 begins taking on water, which knocks out their radio equipment not long after they begin sending out distress signals. The sub has a limited amount of oxygen on board, and tempers begin to flare as the men begin to wonder who (if anyone) can survive if they are not rescued soon. Adding to this tension is the presence of torpedo launcher Burke (Kenneth MacKenna). The ship's commander, Weymouth (Charles Gerrard), thinks that Burke may actually be Quartermain, a British officer who was the enemy of Weymouth's best friend and was widely presumed to be dead after going missing in action. A young Frank Albertson plays the sub's ensign, and John Wayne has a small part as a radio operator.
underwater, war, artifact, boating, Britain, captain [military], cashier, club [organization], collision, courage, crew, death, diver, emotion, escape, freedom, hitman, humiliation, life-savings, officer, pressure, problems, rap-music, responsibility, sacrifice, sea, secrets, service, struggle, submarine, sunken, survivor, tension, torpedo, unconscious, water, man, trapped