Sullivans

The Sullivans

4.2 4
Director: Lloyd Bacon

Cast: Anne Baxter, Thomas Mitchell, Ward Bond

     
 

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The Sullivans attempts to find the positives in one of the most tragic chapters of World War II. Edward Ryan, John Campbell, James B. Cardwell, John Alvin and George Offerman Jr. play the Sullivan brothers, sons of an Iowa railroad worker (Thomas Mitchell) and his wife (Selena Royle). The film traces the boys from childhood, maintaining a relatively

Overview

The Sullivans attempts to find the positives in one of the most tragic chapters of World War II. Edward Ryan, John Campbell, James B. Cardwell, John Alvin and George Offerman Jr. play the Sullivan brothers, sons of an Iowa railroad worker (Thomas Mitchell) and his wife (Selena Royle). The film traces the boys from childhood, maintaining a relatively lighthearted tone until the Sullivans sign up en masse for the navy at the outbreak of the war. Refusing to be separated, the boys are all assigned to the cruiser Juneau--and all are killed when the vessel goes down at Guadalcanal. This appalling incident (which made something of a celebrity of the brothers' grieving father when he went on a nationwide patriotic lecture tour) resulted in the Navy's decision to never again allowed all the enlisted members of one family to serve on the same ship. Even from the vantage point of fifty years, the scene in which the family receives the wire from the war department is impossible to watch with a dry eye.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Michael Costello
Lloyd Bacon's film is a fine tribute to the five Sullivan brothers who died simultaneously when the ship to which they were all assigned went down in the Pacific theater during WWII. The tragic event, which led to historic changes separating family members in the military, was the primary source for Spielberg's Saving Private Ryan (1998). The film is structured as a series of vignettes about the Iowa-bred brothers first as young boys and then young men, designed to illustrate both how typical and how precious were the lives that were lost. What's most unusual about the film is the degree to which some of the period conventions about the depiction of family life were suspended in favor of a sense of naturalism, albeit slightly sentimental. Part of this can be attributed to the exceptional performance of Thomas Mitchell as the wise, low-key father of the brood, and part to the unforced spontaneity of the script. This moving film is far more telling about the effects of war than all but a few films of its time.

Product Details

Release Date:
11/22/2005
UPC:
0089859844027
Original Release:
1944
Rating:
PG
Source:
Vci Video
Region Code:
0
Time:
1:52:00

Special Features

Closed Caption; New digital transfer; Optional English subtitles; Original theatrical trailer; Actor photo gallery; Actor bios; A Tribute to the Sullivan Brothers - service records of the Sullivans, family photo album, letters to the Navy, a letter from Joseph, a letter from Franklin D. Roosevelt, the Freedom Flag; The Grout Museum; The U.S.S. Juneau - the last muster list (with a reading of Lt. Roger W. O'Neill's last action report), eyewitness account by Victor Gibson (from the 1988 5 Sullivan Brothers' Convention Center re-dedication ceremony), and memorials; The Survivors - interview with Frank Holmgren (the last living survivor), speeches by Wyatt Butterfield and Lt. Cmdr. Lester Zook (from the 1988 5 Sullivan Brothers' Convention Center re-dedication ceremony, and list of survivors

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Anne Baxter Katherine Mary
Thomas Mitchell Mr. Sullivan
Ward Bond Lieutenant
Edmon Ryan Al
Bobby Driscoll Al, as a child
Trudy Marshall Genevieve
Selena Royle Mrs. Sullivan
John Campbell Frank
Addison Richards Naval Captain
James B. Cardwell George
John Alvin Matt
George Offerman Joe
Roy Roberts Fr. Francis
Mary McCarty Gladys
Nancy June Robinson Genevieve as a Child
Buddy Swan George as a Boy
Billy Cummings Matt as a Boy
Johnny Calkins Joe as a Boy
John Nesbitt Admiral
Selmar Jackson Damage Control Officer
Barbara Brown Nurse
Marvin Davis Frank as a Boy
Mae Marsh Woman
Ted Offenbecker Joe
Elsa Peterson Nun
Harry Strang CPO
Leon Tyler Boy

Technical Credits
Lloyd Bacon Director
Lucien Andriot Cinematographer
James Basevi Art Director
Edward Doherty Original Story
Leland Fuller Art Director
Sam Jaffe Producer
Louis Loeffler Editor
Mary C. McCall Screenwriter
Cyril Mockridge Score Composer
Alfred Newman Score Composer,Musical Direction/Supervision
Jules Schermer Screenwriter
Fred Sersen Special Effects

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Fighting Sullivans
1. Morning at the Sullivans [6:34]
2. New Pet [4:54]
3. Confessions [5:47]
4. Mischievous Brothers [4:44]
5. Smoking Like Men [4:49]
6. The Wood Box [10:26]
7. Runaway [7:26]
8. Motorcycle Race [4:46]
9. Falling in Love [6:54]
10. Talk of Marriage [7:03]
11. Sibling Teasing [5:20]
12. Making Amends [4:54]
13. Family Addition [7:07]
14. News of Pearl Harbor [5:50]
15. Enlisting Together [6:32]
16. Off to War [6:38]
17. Battle at Sea [4:17]
18. Family Tragedy [7:57]

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The Sullivans 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This movie is based on a true story, about a real family during WWII. It's a very good one to see! It follows five brothers through their childhood, and shows their family life, so the entire movie does not take place during the war. Even if you're not crazy about war movies, you'd still like this. Warning: it's pretty sad at the end.
SilkySyl64 More than 1 year ago
My husband first introduced me to this movie forty years ago. He came from a family of 5 brothers and 2 sisters. He and his brothers all served in the military, but different branches of it. This movie really hit home with him; he cannot watch it without shedding a few tears at the end. It's a down-to-earth story of an American family, so true-to-life and entertaining. I love it when the boys are young. Our daughter has a family of six children, ages 9 months up to 10 years old. She also loves this movie and has shared it with her family so it will be passed down with the generations. I was so glad it came out on DVD as our tape of it was getting old. The Sullivan Act was put into law because of the outcome of these boys so that no other family would have to endure that kind of heartbreak. This is a great story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago