Incredible Mr. Limpet

Incredible Mr. Limpet

3.8 6
Director: Arthur Lubin

Cast: Arthur Lubin, Don Knotts, Carole Cook, Jack Weston

     
 

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In this amusing fantasy, a combination of live-action and animated effects, Don Knotts plays scrawny bookkeeper Henry Limpet, who longs to help the U.S. after the outbreak of World War II. He becomes depressed after being turned down by the Navy, particularly after his pal George (Jack Weston) is accepted. When Henry takes a walk on the Coney Island pier with his wife… See more details below

Overview

In this amusing fantasy, a combination of live-action and animated effects, Don Knotts plays scrawny bookkeeper Henry Limpet, who longs to help the U.S. after the outbreak of World War II. He becomes depressed after being turned down by the Navy, particularly after his pal George (Jack Weston) is accepted. When Henry takes a walk on the Coney Island pier with his wife Bessie (Carole Cook), he falls into the water and is transformed into a fish, complete with his reading spectacles. Henry finally gets to help the war effort by helping to track down Nazi U boats for the Navy. Andrew Duggan and Larry Keating play the admirals who spearhead the secret mission involving the transformed Henry. Longtime Disney production associate John Rose was the producer of this film, and the influence of the animation is evident.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Greg Fagan
The Incredible Mr. Limpet (1964), one of the finest family fish stories ever produced in Hollywood, was Don Knotts's breakthrough to big-screen stardom after he made a name for himself as a regular on the Andy Griffith Show. Today, Limpet's a delight for its effective mixing of animation and live-action scenes into a coherent whole. The story casts Knotts as Henry Limpet, a bespectacled Brooklyn bookkeeper whose various physical shortcomings render him ineligible for the army, just as America's imminent entry into WWII is igniting patriotic fervor across the land. Furthering Henry's diminished sense of self worth is the bond between his brassy bride Bessie (Carole Cook) and best buddy George (Jack Weston) -- a sailor who seems a much better match for Bessie from the get-go. Soon after lamenting to his pet fish, "I wish I were a fish," Henry falls off a Coney Island pier and gets his wish. And what a fish: Henry retains his human intellect, and possesses a unique underwater roar (more a thrummm, actually) that enables him to help locate and destroy Nazi U-boats. Along for this heroic ride are such revered character actors as Andrew Duggan and Larry Keating as the officers who press Limpet into duty, while voice-acting giant Paul Frees (Boris Badenov) delivers some juicy lines as Henry's undersea buddy, Crusty the Crustacean. The Incredible Mr. Limpet falls somewhere between a curio and a classic; under the charming spell of the DVD's gorgeous image, it's tempting to make the case for the latter.
All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Generally dismissed upon its initial release, The Incredible Mr. Limpet has grown in stature over the years, in large part due to the fondness its original target audience felt for it as they grew older. It's no classic -- not even of the "cult" variety, for its childlike qualities work against it -- but it's immensely enjoyable, especially for those who are willing to accept many of its technical limitations as par for the course in 1964. Chief among those limitations is a mixture of live action and animation that is often far from seamless. On its own terms, the animation is not top drawer, but it's more than adequate, and the vivid palette employed is striking. (That same palette also invades the live action segments, making the transition to animation somewhat less jarring.) The script has an interesting plot, even if it tries to cover a bit too much ground, and the character of George is actually pretty complex for this kind of venture. While some may feel cheated that there is no explanation for Limpet's transformation, and others may feel disturbed by the fact that he never changes back into a human, both of these elements contribute to the film's uniqueness. Don Knotts turns in one of his best film performances, although his jittery mannerisms are an acquired taste. Jack Weston makes George both appealing and a bit offputting, and Carole Cook has some touching moments when she learns of her husband's predicament. Limpet drags a little in a few places, but overall it's sweet, amusing and pleasantly odd.

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Product Details

Release Date:
08/07/2012
UPC:
0883929244263
Original Release:
1964
Rating:
G
Source:
Warner Home Video
Time:
1:39:00
Sales rank:
36,167

Special Features

Introduction by Don Knotts; Vintage Documentary Weekend At Weeki Wachee; Mr. Limpet's Fish Tank; Theatrical Trailer

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Don Knotts Henry Limpet
Carole Cook Bessie Limpet
Jack Weston Lt. George Stickle
Andrew Duggan Adm. Harlock
Larry Keating Adm. Spewter
Oscar Beregi Adm. Doemitz
Paul H. Frees Crusty
Elizabeth MacRae Ladyfish
Charles Meredith Adm. Fourstar

Technical Credits
Arthur Lubin Director
Harold Adamson Songwriter
Rose Brawd Costumes/Costume Designer
Jameson Brewer Screenwriter
Gerry Chiniquy Special Effects
LeRoy G. Deane Art Director
Sammy Fain Songwriter
Stan Jones Sound/Sound Designer
William L. Kuehl Set Decoration/Design
Robert McKimson Special Effects
Joe di Mona Screenwriter
Maurice Noble Special Effects
Frank Perkins Score Composer
Donald A. Peters Special Effects
Hawley Pratt Special Effects
Robert Richards Costumes/Costume Designer
Jack Rose Producer,Screenwriter
John C. Rose Producer,Screenwriter
Harold E. Stine Cinematographer
Donald Tait Editor
Vladimir Tytla Special Effects

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