Sergeant Mike (1944)

60 mins | Drama | 9 November 1944

Director:

Henry Levin

Producer:

Jack Fier

Cinematographer:

L. W. O'Connell

Editors:

Reg Browne, Al Clark

Production Designer:

Edward C. Jewell

Production Company:

Columbia Pictures Corp.
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HISTORY

The film opens with the following dedication: "To the dog who serves in war the same as his human master does, who gets through where machines and men might fail, who gives a life to save a life, we respectfully dedicate this motion picture. We gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of the Quartermaster Corps in filming this production." Although a HR production chart adds Ross Hunter to the cast, his appearance in the released film has not been confirmed. The plot as described in both the Var review and a studio synopsis differs from the viewed print. Those summaries state that the dog "Pearl" is killed by a sniper, but in the viewed print "Pearl" successfully completes her mission and returns unharmed. It is possible that two different prints of the film were screened, and that the dog died at the end of the print shown at the New York screening reviewed by Var ... More Less

The film opens with the following dedication: "To the dog who serves in war the same as his human master does, who gets through where machines and men might fail, who gives a life to save a life, we respectfully dedicate this motion picture. We gratefully acknowledge the cooperation of the Quartermaster Corps in filming this production." Although a HR production chart adds Ross Hunter to the cast, his appearance in the released film has not been confirmed. The plot as described in both the Var review and a studio synopsis differs from the viewed print. Those summaries state that the dog "Pearl" is killed by a sniper, but in the viewed print "Pearl" successfully completes her mission and returns unharmed. It is possible that two different prints of the film were screened, and that the dog died at the end of the print shown at the New York screening reviewed by Var . More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
18 Nov 1944.
---
Daily Variety
16 Mar 45
p. 3.
Film Daily
13 Feb 45
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Jun 44
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
16 Mar 45
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
7 Oct 44
p. 2131.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
10 Feb 45
p. 2310.
Variety
7 Feb 45
p. 23.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
Dial dir
PRODUCER
Prod
WRITER
Orig scr, Orig scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
2d cam
ART DIRECTORS
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Film ed
SET DECORATOR
MUSIC
SOUND
Re-rec and eff mixer
PRODUCTION MISC
Research dir
Research dir
DETAILS
Release Date:
9 November 1944
Production Date:
26 June--11 July 1944
Copyright Claimant:
Columbia Pictures Corp.
Copyright Date:
9 November 1944
Copyright Number:
LP13457
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
60
Length(in feet):
5,478
Country:
United States
PCA No:
10246
SYNOPSIS

Private Tom Allen becomes incensed when he is transferred from his machine gun outfit to the canine corps. At the war dog training center near Baltimore, Allen meets his commander, dog trainer Patrick Henry, and is assigned to work with Mike, a German shepherd. Simms, an animal lover, is paired with the dog Pearl. Because Allen resents playing "nursemaid to a dog," Henry orders him to respond to a letter written by S. K. Arno, Mike's owner. Thinking that Arno is wealthy and may be of use, Allen decides to visit the Arno house as soon as he is granted a pass. At the house, Allen is surprised and disappointed when he is greeted by a small boy who introduces himself as S. K. Arno. Determined to leave as soon as possible, Allen asks to use the bathroom to clean up, and as the soldier shaves, S. K. tells Allen that he has wanted his beloved dog to serve his country ever since his father was killed in action. S. K. is heartbroken to learn that Allen regards Mike as just a piece of machinery. Soon after, the boy's mother, Terry, arrives home and invites Allen to stay for dinner. When S. K. fails to appear at the table, Allen volunteers to fetch him and finds the boy sobbing in his room because the soldier doesn't appreciate Mike. The boy's devotion forces Allen to rethink his attitude, and he promises to make Mike his comrade in arms. After dinner, Allen takes Terry and S. K. to a movie and promises to keep in contact with them. Upon returning to the post, ... +


Private Tom Allen becomes incensed when he is transferred from his machine gun outfit to the canine corps. At the war dog training center near Baltimore, Allen meets his commander, dog trainer Patrick Henry, and is assigned to work with Mike, a German shepherd. Simms, an animal lover, is paired with the dog Pearl. Because Allen resents playing "nursemaid to a dog," Henry orders him to respond to a letter written by S. K. Arno, Mike's owner. Thinking that Arno is wealthy and may be of use, Allen decides to visit the Arno house as soon as he is granted a pass. At the house, Allen is surprised and disappointed when he is greeted by a small boy who introduces himself as S. K. Arno. Determined to leave as soon as possible, Allen asks to use the bathroom to clean up, and as the soldier shaves, S. K. tells Allen that he has wanted his beloved dog to serve his country ever since his father was killed in action. S. K. is heartbroken to learn that Allen regards Mike as just a piece of machinery. Soon after, the boy's mother, Terry, arrives home and invites Allen to stay for dinner. When S. K. fails to appear at the table, Allen volunteers to fetch him and finds the boy sobbing in his room because the soldier doesn't appreciate Mike. The boy's devotion forces Allen to rethink his attitude, and he promises to make Mike his comrade in arms. After dinner, Allen takes Terry and S. K. to a movie and promises to keep in contact with them. Upon returning to the post, Allen warmly embraces Mike, and the two begin to work as a team as the dogs are trained to act as scouts and messengers. Their training complete, the dogs and their masters are assigned to a mission in the Pacific. Before leaving, Allen surprises S. K. with a visit from Mike and tells Terry that he has fallen in love with her. On their voyage, Mike becomes seasick, and when they land in enemy territory, they are ordered directly into battle. Wounded in a skirmish, Simms is forced to remain at the message center while Pvt. Rogers takes charge of Pearl. Rogers, Allen and the others proceed in to the jungle, and Mike warns them of an ambush. When an enemy bullet kills their guide, Rogers sends Pearl back to the message center with a dispatch regarding their status. At the message center, Simms welcomes Pearl and then sends her back into the jungle with orders for the soldiers to continue. While capturing an enemy machine gun nest, Rogers and another soldier are wounded, and Rogers sends Pearl back to the message center with an order for reinforcements. As the wounded Americans take cover in their fox hole that night, Mike alerts them to the enemy's approach. Allen and the others dig in to defend their position, and soon after, reinforcements, led by Pearl, arrive to overpower the Japanese. During a ceremony back home, Allen and Mike are honored for their bravery, and afterward, Mike runs to greet the beaming S. K. +

GENRE
Genre:
Sub-genre:
Animal, World War II


Subject

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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