Private War of Major Benson

The Private War of Major Benson

Director: Jerry Hopper, Charlton Heston, Julie Adams, Tim Hovey

Cast: Jerry Hopper, Charlton Heston, Julie Adams, Tim Hovey

     
 
A too-tough Army major gets himself sent to run an ROTC program at a Santa Barbara military school after he calls unwanted attention to the military by mouthing off to a prominent news magazine. When he arrives to his new post, the major is shocked to find it run by nuns and that his new troops are school children. His assignment is to make "men" out of the

Overview

A too-tough Army major gets himself sent to run an ROTC program at a Santa Barbara military school after he calls unwanted attention to the military by mouthing off to a prominent news magazine. When he arrives to his new post, the major is shocked to find it run by nuns and that his new troops are school children. His assignment is to make "men" out of the rambunctious recruits so that the school can keep from losing its ROTC certification. At first the hard-as-nails major treats his young charges with all the tenderness of a old army boot and the boys, tired of his constant barrage of insults and demands, come to hate him. Further complicating matters is the major's disconcerting romantic feelings for the school's lovely doctor. Unfortunately, she isn't about to put up with his ultra-macho guff anymore than the children are and before this romantic comedy is through, the major learns important lessons about the value of humanity in dealing with others.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
An amiable if unspectacular formula comedy, The Private War of Major Benson at least gives Charlton Heston one of his rare shots at comedy. And surprisingly, Heston is pretty good here. Certainly, it helps that the character of Benson is one that emphasizes the macho, hard-headed, stubborn side of the actor. That he is able to play this as easily for laughs as he is for drama is fortunate indeed, and it gives Benson a great deal of fun. Of course, Benson ultimately has to change ' this is a comedy, after all ' and Heston does very well in making the change of heart believable as well. He also has a nice rapport with co-star Julie Adams, which is not always the case with his love interests. For her part, Adams is aces here; a very talented and attractive actress, she somehow didn't have the right spark to become a star, but she usually turned in very good performances, and this is one of her best. The supporting cast, including little Tim Hovey, crusty William Demarest and sensitive Sal Mineo, are also quite good. Where Benson falls down is in the script. It's lively and amusing enough, but it's predictable, trite, often unbelievable and sometimes just plain sappy. Jerry Hopper's direction is adequate, but a stronger hand was needed to raise the film above the limitations of the script. Even with its flaws, Benson is still enjoyable.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/11/2015
UPC:
0025192313516
Original Release:
1955
Source:
Universal Mod
Time:
1:46:00
Sales rank:
9,112

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Charlton Heston Major Bernard Benson
Julie Adams Dr. Kay "Lammy" Lambert
Tim Hovey Cadet Tiger Flaherty
William Demarest John, handyman
Nana Bryant Mother Redempta
Tim Considine Cadet Sgt. Hibler
Sal Mineo Cadet Col. Dusik
Milburn Stone Maj. Gen. Ramsey
Mary Field Sister Mary Theresa
Donald Keeler Cadet Cpl. Scawalski
Gary Pagett Cadet Lieutenant Molony
Mickey Little Cadet Lt. Hanratty
David Janssen Young Lieutenant
Richard H. Cutting Monsignor Collins
Mary Alan Hokanson Sister Mary Thomasina
Butch Jones Cadet Capt. Petri
Yvonne Peattie Mrs. Hibler
Edward Platt Monsignor Collins
Kay Stewart Mrs. Flahetly
Don Haggerty Mr. Hibler

Technical Credits
Jerry Hopper Director
Alexander Golitzen Art Director
Glenn E. Anderson Sound/Sound Designer
Robert F. Boyle Art Director
Leslie I. Carey Sound/Sound Designer
Joe Connelly Screenwriter
Russell A. Gausman Set Decoration/Design
Joseph E. Gershenson Musical Direction/Supervision
Marshall Green Asst. Director
Ted Kent Editor
Ruby Levitt Set Decoration/Design
Harold Lipstein Cinematographer
Henry Mancini Score Composer,Songwriter
Bob Mosher Original Story
Rosemary Odell Costumes/Costume Designer
Howard Pine Producer
William Roberts Screenwriter
Richard Alan Simmons Screenwriter
Herman Stein Score Composer,Songwriter
Bud Westmore Makeup

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