The Enemy Below

Robert Mitchum and Curt Jürgens in The Enemy Below (1957)

I don’t normally watch war movies, but the 1957 classic The Enemy Below is a war movie for people who don’t like war movies. It is best if you don’t know anything about the story or plot before you see it, so I won’t share any details here, but I will say that even if you are a pacifist (as I am), you will probably like this movie.

Some interesting facts:

  • The German actor Curt Jürgens, who played the German U-boat commander, was critical of Hitler and the Nazis and was sent to an internment camp in Hungary in 1944. He became an Austrian citizen after World War II.
  • The USS Whitehurst, an active-duty ship first used during World War II, was utilized for this movie.
  • Many of the sailors on the American ship in this movie were actual crewmen of the USS Whitehurst and not actors.
  • The main actors on the German submarine were born in Germany and Austria.
  • This is the film debut for (Albert) David Hedison (Jr.) as Lt. Ware, and he went on to a starring role in the television series Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea (1964-1968) as Captain Lee Crane.
  • The excellent 1966 first-season Star Trek episode Balance of Terror was influenced by this movie and closely parallels it.

Highly recommended!

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