Torpedo Run

Torpedo Run is a 1958 American war film directed by Joseph Pevney and starring Glenn Ford as a World War II submarine commander in the Pacific who is obsessed with sinking a particular Japanese aircraft carrier. It was filmed in Metrocolor CinemaScope.

Torpedo Run
Directed byJoseph Pevney
Produced byEdmund Grainger
Written by
Screenplay byRichard Sale
CinematographyGeorge J. Folsey
Edited byGene Ruggiero
Distributed byMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
  • October 24, 1958 (1958-10-24)
Running time
98 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$1.5 million[1]
Box office$2.6 million[1]

A. Arnold Gillespie and Harold Humbrock were nominated for an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects.[2]


The American submarine Greyfish, under Lieutenant Commander/Commander Barney Doyle (Glenn Ford), searches for the Shinaru, one of the Japanese aircraft carriers that led the attack on Pearl Harbor. Doyle receives word that the target has an escort, including a transport ship Yoshida Maru carrying his wife and child, who were captured in the Philippines.

As luck would have it, Greyfish finds the ships. Doyle's second in command, Lieutenant/Lieutenant Commander Archer Sloan (Ernest Borgnine) tries to talk his friend out of risking the lives of his family, but Doyle proceeds with the attack. To their horror, their torpedoes sink the transport. The Japanese make no attempt to rescue the survivors, hoping to lure the sub to the surface. Doyle is forced to leave the prisoners to drown.

Doyle manages to follow the Shinaru into Tokyo Bay itself and tries again to sink his nemesis, but fails and barely escapes from Japanese destroyers. The Greyfish then returns to Pearl Harbor. There, Vice Admiral Setton (Philip Ober) wants to promote Doyle to a desk job, but his anguished second-in-command Sloan begs on behalf of his friend and superior officer for and gets one last chance at the Shinaru. Sloan turns down a command of his own to accompany him.

Doyle is assigned a quiet, out-of-the-way patrol area off the Alaskan coast, but fortune is with him. He encounters the Shinaru once more. The sub sustains some damage from a collision with a boom and has to launch its attack using sonar only. After the torpedoes are away, the sub is sent to the bottom by the Shinaru's escort with depth-charges. The crewmen are able to exit and use Momsen lungs to reach the surface, where they are rescued by a sister sub, who sinks the escort. When they are brought aboard, they are told that they have sunk the Shinaru.



Bosley Crowther of The New York Times was unimpressed, writing, "Stereotypes of pig-boat fighting that were stale in Destination Tokyo are played and replayed in this picture as if they were freshly inspired. ... it is also played in a highly hackneyed fashion and often faked with preposterous miniatures."[3]

According to MGM records, the film made $1,145,000 in the U.S. and Canada and $1,435,000 elsewhere, resulting in a loss of $195,000.[1]

Home media

The film has been released on VHS and DVD, the latter in Warner's Archive Collection.

See also


  1. The Eddie Mannix Ledger, Los Angeles: Margaret Herrick Library, Center for Motion Picture Study.
  2. "The 31st Academy Awards (1959) Nominees and Winners". Retrieved August 16, 2014.
  3. Bosley Crowther (October 25, 1958). "Torpedo Run (1958) / Hollywood's Undersea War; Torpedo Run' Opens at the Capitol Borgnine and Ford in Submarine Story". The New York Times.
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