Movies about USNA or Navy

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by jebdad, Nov 25, 2013.

  1. jebdad

    jebdad Member

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    My daughter is starting the application process with an application for NASS in January. We are not a military family. Can anyone recommend any movies or documentaries about USNA life, Navy life, history, etc. Anything you think a candidate could glean information from?

    We have the candidates guide - a book we bought from the bookstore when we were recently at Annapolis and she has read that.
     
  2. krhern

    krhern DS Class of 2018

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    Some of the best movies are on YouTube.com. They are made by parents, photographers, and midshipmen. If you are looking for Hollywood movies....watch Annapolis.
     
  3. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Annapolis with James Franco seems to be the most accurate! :thumb:
     
  4. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    If your looking for a Hollywood movie drama about the possible monotony of Navy life as well as it's sacrifices I would recommend "Mister Roberts". I can't speak to the accuracy of "Annapolis" but it's certainly worth watching.
     
  5. Spud

    Spud BGO

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    The best video on the Academy itself is "USNA-The Making of an Officer" found on Youtube and I have all my candidates view it. If a young person, after watching it, doesn't have it ring some bells for them, the Academy is not for them. Another great source of info is that quaint 20th Century device called a good book. I would recommend "The Caine Mutiny" by Herman Wouk which is a true classic morality play based on military values. Another is "Sense of Honor" by James Webb (an Academy grad and highly decorated Marine) which shows the Academy 50 years ago and, again, a morality play that any midshipman could identify with today. The upperclass today have little of the authority that they did in that time and while the modern Plebe year is not even close the the physical and mental stress of Feb 1968, it captures timeless stress and leadership issues very well.

    For Naval Aviation after the Academy, "Feet Wet" (non fiction)by Paul Gilchrist will have you yanking and banking in your sleep dodging SAMs over North Vietnam. For those whose idea of fun is a pressurized tube prowling beneath the sea, "Red November" (non fiction) by Craig Reed is the true story of what subs do and did during the cold war. Prepare to dive under your covers to read by flashlight. If sleeping in the rain and forming and up-close-and-personal relationship with a ground enemy is the perfect end to the day, "Fields of Fire" by Webb, again, is an intimate look at the active duty Marine Corps.

    I was completely unimpressed with the flick "Annapolis"----same old Hollywood fantasy of what the military is.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2013
  6. rocatlin

    rocatlin Member

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    For what it's worth, when my son went for his CVW, all the mids were saying Annapolis was basically their favorite comedy and no where near an accurate portrayal.
     
  7. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    When Annapolis came out in theaters, I can say the USNA exchange midshipmen "heard" about it. It wasn't even a good boxing movie.

    Also... it wasn't filmed at Annapolis.
     
  8. USNAhopeful2018

    USNAhopeful2018 Member

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    Well, if she's planning on going I'd suggest watching movies like Top Gun too.. The mids I've met reference it A LOT.
     
  9. nigel

    nigel Member

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    For life aboard an aricraft carrier, watch Carrier, a PBS 10-episode series filmed aboard the USS Nimitz. The film crew shot the series over a 5 month period. I read that the captain allowed them to shoot only if they agreed not to focus on just the pilots. I guess all filmmakers get excited about pilots, and the captain wanted the story to be told about all of the other hard-working people on board.

    My husband and I found it fascinating and got very interested in the crew they were following. We would have enjoyed it even if DD wasn't interested in USNA! Overall the series is very well done, and I am told it is an excellent look at life aboard a carrier.

    The entire series is available at Amazon for less than $20. Also, PBS has a website about the entire series, and you can also view all episodes there. I don't know if I am allowed to post a link, but just Google "PBS documentary Carrier" and it will come up.

    Nicole
     
  10. USNA2016Dad

    USNA2016Dad Member

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    Here are a couple that may be of interest; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7w4xL8-21m8 and http://www.usna.com/page.aspx?pid=696. The first one is YouTube video while the second one has videos from past plebe summers available for download. Also, as a previous poster said, any search on YouTube with the words I-Day, Plebe Summer, Induction Day, USNA or US Naval Academy will produce many choices. Cheers.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2013
  11. Hurricane12

    Hurricane12 USNA 2012

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    "NAVY BLUE AND GOLD."

    It's from 1937 and stars Jimmy Stewart. A guy in my company found the DVD in the library youngster year and we watched it kind of as a joke...turns out it's an awesome old movie. Plus, it has everything you would want to know about the Naval Academy. Football! D-bag upperclass! Priors with murky pasts! Plebe Hazing! Mids fighting over midhounds! Better boxing scenes than "Annapolis!"

    Seriously, here's the trailer:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-f6F5b3tkaU

    I have no idea where you'd find it, but it's really worth a watch.


    Other than that, Spud hit the nail on the head. "A Sense of Honor" is a good read, and even if the specifics are slightly dated it's almost alarming how eternal a lot of the problems faced by the characters are.

    "The Caine Mutiny" is also an awesome book. I actually just reread it last week (along with the worryingly similar, and unfortunately true "Arnheiter Affair," about a SWO CO relieved of command during Vietnam) and it's crazy how well Wouk nailed the atmosphere of a command and the people who inhabit it. As far as how a group of officers interact with one another it's incredibly accurate.
    I can relate almost every character to someone I've met and worked with, either at USNA or in the Marine Corps. One of my SWO friends out in Japan actually described his ship as "Just like 'The Caine Mutiny,' but with less bad parts."
    The movie's okay, but doesn't come close to the quality of the book.
     
  12. krhern

    krhern DS Class of 2018

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    The entire series is on YouTube.
     
  13. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Carrier was excellent. It didn't please the Navy, because it showed the good and the bad, which can be hard for senior officers to take. BUT, I think it was clearly a very real program, which was a nice change of pace It can be refreshing to move from the "look at these honored traditions from the floating shining city on the hill" to a true taste for the good and bad. It doesn't happen often. I wish the series was longer.
     
  14. futuremarinemom

    futuremarinemom Member

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    The Recipient's Son: A Novel of Honor is a new book written by Stephen Phillips, a 1992 USNA grad and father of a plebe, class of 2017. It's available on Amazon and at the USNA Midshipman Store. We met the author and got our signed copy on I-Day. A good read, set in the 1990's.
     
  15. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    "Annapolis" the movie is the worst ever made about USNA. Navy didn't even let them on the Yard.
     
  16. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Shhhhhhhhh.... :wink:
     
  17. Vista123

    Vista123 Member

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    LITS-I snorted my coffee when you posted Annapolis--so funny. I knew immediately that you were joking.

    I read:

    In The Shadow of Greatness: The first Naval Academy class to graduate after the attacks of 9/11 wrote a book together. it is a fast simple read but interesting. I hadnt really realized how diverse the duties really are upon graduation until I read that.
    http://www.military.com/off-duty/books/2012/09/11/shadow-of-greatness-review.html


    I saw:
    Carrier was good-it really showed the mundane day to day but is so alien to most people (myself included) that it was very interesting. Only ~5 episodes but interesting. its free on hulu.

    The "Plebe summer" videos are good, also the "surviving the first" yr series and "the making of".


    Thanks for the 'sense of honor' tip, I am looking for a new book...
     

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