The Info List - The Horizontal Lieutenant

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The Horizontal Lieutenant
The Horizontal Lieutenant
is a 1962 American romantic comedy war film, based on the 1961 novel The Bottletop Affair by Gordon Cotler who was a Japanese interpreter for US Army Intelligence during World War II[2]. It is a military comedy about an unfortunate army intelligence lieutenant who finds himself isolated on a remote Japanese island army outpost during World War II.[3] It stars Jim Hutton
Jim Hutton
and Paula Prentiss and was directed by Richard Thorpe. It was the last of four teamings between Hutton and Prentiss following Where the Boys Are, The Honeymoon Machine
The Honeymoon Machine
and Bachelor in Paradise.[4][5]


1 Plot 2 Cast 3 Production 4 Reception 5 Comic book adaption 6 See also 7 References 8 External links

Plot[edit] 2nd Lt. Merle Wye (Hutton), an Army Intelligence officer stationed in Hawaii, is rendered horizontal when struck in the head by a foul ball while playing for his unit's baseball team. In the post hospital he is attracted to Lt. Molly Blue (Prentiss), a nurse he once knew in college. His superior (and manager of the team) orders the inept Merle to distant Rotohan, a secure island liberated some months before, ostensibly to relieve Lt. Billy Monk (Jack Carter), who has been unable to capture a Japanese holdout called Kobayashi suspected of pilfering military supplies. However the coach really wants Monk, a former professional baseball player, for his team. By claiming to be ordered to dangerous duty Merle tries to seduce Blue, who when she discovers the ruse barely gives him the time of day. On Rotohan, Merle and his Nisei
interpreter (and lothario) Sgt. Roy Tada (Yoshio Yoda) team up with Monk to flush out the wily thief hiding in the hills. Using a reluctant Tada as a "spy" they discover that Kobayashi has been stealing the supplies, all creature comforts, to feed and clothe his pregnant girlfriend. But Merle is distracted when Blue is also assigned to his camp. With the Navy, in the form of obnoxious Cmdr. Jeremiah Hammerslag (Jim Backus), also hunting Kobayashi, Merle is threatened by his new superior, Col. Korotny (Charles McGraw), with another transfer if he does not capture Kobayashi soon—this time to an even more remote rock with only six other soldiers as company. While romancing a local girl (Miyoshi Umeki), Tada discovers that Kobayashi is not even a soldier but a former circus performer hidden in a cave in the hills by the villagers. That night Kobayashi is to appear at a variety show staged by the locals to entertain the Americans. When Merle tries to arrest him, the agile Kobayashi stuns him using judo, knocking him horizontal again, and escapes. Col. Korotny tells Merle he is shipping out in the morning. During a drive in the hills to "say goodbye", Merle and Blue stumble on the cave, where Blue captures the acrobat after Merle once more becomes "the horizontal lieutenant". Merle is given a medal anyway and wins her heart. Cast[edit]

Jim Hutton
Jim Hutton
as Lt. Merle Wye Paula Prentiss
Paula Prentiss
as Lt. Molly Blue Jack Carter as Lt. Billy Monk Jim Backus
Jim Backus
as Cdr. Jeremiah Hammerslag Charles McGraw
Charles McGraw
as Col. Charles Korotny Miyoshi Umeki
Miyoshi Umeki
as Akiko Marty Ingels as Buckles Lloyd Kino as Sgt. Jess Yomura Linda Wong as Michido Yoshio Yoda as Sgt. Roy Tada Yuki Shimoda
Yuki Shimoda
as Kobayashi

Production[edit] The novel was published in 1959.[6] Hutton and Prentiss were under contract to MGM at the time.[7] Reception[edit] According to MGM records, the film earned $1.1 million in the US and Canada and $750,000 overseas, resulting in a loss of $380,000.[1] Comic book adaption[edit]

Dell Movie Classic: The Horizontal Lieutenant
The Horizontal Lieutenant
(October 1962)[8][9]

See also[edit]

List of American films of 1962

References[edit] Notes

^ a b c The Eddie Mannix Ledger, Los Angeles: Margaret Herrick Library, Center for Motion Picture Study . ^ https://variety.com/2013/scene/news/writer-gordon-cotler-dies-at-89-1118064990/ ^ The New York Times ^ The Horizontal Lieutenant
The Horizontal Lieutenant
at Turner Classic Movies ^ Every Hollywood Press Agent Dreams of a Story Like Hers. This Time If's True Hopper, Hedda. Chicago Daily Tribune (1923-1963) [Chicago, Ill] 22 Oct 1961: b18. ^ Books of The Times By ORVILLE PRESCOTT. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 31 July 1959: 21. ^ Young Jim Hutton
Jim Hutton
Owner of Long Term Film Contract Tinee, Mae. Chicago Daily Tribune (1923-1963) [Chicago, Ill] 12 Nov 1961: f11. ^ Dell Movie Classic: The Horizontal Lieutenant' at the Grand Comics Database ^ Dell Movie Classic: The Horizontal Lieutenant
The Horizontal Lieutenant
at the Comic Book DB

External links[edit]

The Horizontal Lieutenant
The Horizontal Lieutenant
on IMDb The Horizontal Lieutenant
The Horizontal Lieutenant
at the TCM Movie Database Original trailer at TCM

v t e

Films directed by Richard Thorpe


Fast and Fearless
Fast and Fearless
(1924) Full Speed (1925) The Bonanza Buckaroo (1926) Deuce High (1926) Josselyn's Wife (1926) The Meddlin' Stranger (1927) The Ballyhoo Buster (1928) Border Romance
Border Romance
(1929) The Utah Kid (1930) Grief Street (1931) The Lawless Woman
The Lawless Woman
(1931) Murder at Dawn (1931) The Devil Plays
The Devil Plays
(1931) Forgotten (1931) Beauty Parlor (1932) Escapade (1932) Forbidden Company (1932) Cross-Examination (1932) The King Murder (1932) The Midnight Lady (1932) Probation (1932) Slightly Married (1932) The Secrets of Wu Sin
The Secrets of Wu Sin
(1932) Thrill of Youth (1932) Women Won't Tell
Women Won't Tell
(1932) A Man of Sentiment
A Man of Sentiment
(1933) Murder on the Campus (1933) Rainbow Over Broadway
Rainbow Over Broadway
(1933) Green Eyes (1934) Cheating Cheaters (1934) Secret of the Chateau
Secret of the Chateau
(1934) Strange Wives
Strange Wives
(1934) Last of the Pagans
Last of the Pagans
(1935) The Voice of Bugle Ann Tarzan Escapes
Tarzan Escapes
(1936) Dangerous Number
Dangerous Number
(1937) Night Must Fall (1937) Double Wedding Man-Proof
(1938) Love Is a Headache
Love Is a Headache
(1938) The First Hundred Years The Toy Wife The Crowd Roars (1938) Three Loves Has Nancy The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1939) Tarzan Finds a Son! The Earl of Chicago 20 Mule Team Wyoming (1940) The Bad Man (1941) Barnacle Bill (1941) Apache Trail (1942) Tarzan's Secret Treasure Tarzan's New York Adventure White Cargo Three Hearts for Julia Above Suspicion (1943) Cry 'Havoc' Two Girls and a Sailor
Two Girls and a Sailor
(1944) The Thin Man Goes Home Thrill of a Romance
Thrill of a Romance
(1945) Her Highness and the Bellboy
Her Highness and the Bellboy
(1945) Fiesta (1947) This Time for Keeps
This Time for Keeps
(1947) On an Island with You
On an Island with You
(1948) A Date with Judy (1948) The Sun Comes Up
The Sun Comes Up
(1949) Big Jack (1949) Challenge to Lassie
Challenge to Lassie
(1949) Malaya (1949) Three Little Words (1950) Vengeance Valley
Vengeance Valley
(1951) The Great Caruso (1951) The Unknown Man
The Unknown Man
(1951) It's a Big Country
It's a Big Country
(1952) Carbine Williams
Carbine Williams
(1952) Ivanhoe (1952) The Prisoner of Zenda (1952) The Girl Who Had Everything
The Girl Who Had Everything
(1953) All the Brothers Were Valiant
All the Brothers Were Valiant
(1953) Knights of the Round Table (1954) The Student Prince (1954) Athena (1954) The Prodigal
The Prodigal
(1955) The Adventures of Quentin Durward
The Adventures of Quentin Durward
(1955) Ten Thousand Bedrooms
Ten Thousand Bedrooms
(1957) Tip on a Dead Jockey
Tip on a Dead Jockey
(1957) Jailhouse Rock (1957) The House of the Seven Hawks
The House of the Seven Hawks
(1959) Killers of Kilimanjaro
Killers of Kilimanjaro
(1959) The Tartars (1961) The Honeymoon Machine
The Honeymoon Machine
(1961) The Horizontal Lieutenant
The Horizontal Lieutenant
(1962) Follow the Boys (1963) Fun in Acapulco
Fun in Acapulco
(1963) The Golden Head (1964) The Truth About Spring
The Truth About Spring
(1965) That Funny Feeling
That Funny Feeling
(1965) The Last Challenge
The Last Challenge


Vultures of the Sea (1928) The Vanishing West
The Vanishing West
(1928) The Fatal Warning
The Fatal Warning
(1929) The King of the Kongo
The King of the Kongo
(1929) The Lone Defender
The Lone Defender
(1930) King