US Submarine Commander Rates 14 Submarine Scenes In Movies | How Real Is It?

Former US submarine commander L. David Marquet rated the realism of submarine scenes in popular movies, judging their technological accuracy as well as the depiction of life on board.

Marquet addresses the realism of nuclear crisis movies, such as “The World Is Not Enough” and “K-19: The Widowmaker,”. He also rated the accuracy of standoff scenes in “The Hunt for Red October,” “The Enemy Below”, “Hunter Killer,” and “Crimson Tide.” He also breaks down the realism of costumes, tactics, and terminology from “U-571.”

Is life on board a submarine, including confined conditions and drills, as depicted in “Das Boot”? Would Navy SEALs enter a submarine from a HALO drop similar to “Act of Valor”, and is it possible for a submarine to hear music from the water’s surface, like in  “The Wolf’s Call”? Can holes on a submarine be plugged with pins and other metal objects, as we see in “The Simpsons”? Would nuclear missiles be triggered by dislodging in a ship interior, such as in “Aquaman”?

Marquet graduated top of his class from the US Naval Academy and served for 28 years on submarines, including as an engineer officer aboard the USS Will Rogers, then as captain on the USS Olympia and the USS Santa Fe. Having retired in 2009, he is now a Wall Street Journal best-selling author of “Turn the Ship Around! A True Story of Turning Followers Into Leaders.”

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US Submarine Commander Rates 14 Submarine Scenes In Movies | How Real Is It?



Made in 1954 as the U.S. Navy entered the nuclear submarine era, “Take ‘Er Down” celebrates the history of the submarine. At :55, the new submarine USS Nautilus is shown on the launching ways. At 1:10 the Navy’s first diesel submarine USS Holland is shown in operation. At 1:28 the L and K class boats of WWI are shown, and then R and S class boats. At 1:57 the outbreak of WWII at Pearl Harbor is shown, and then a brief history of the submarine force operating in the Pacific from 1942-1945. As torpedoes wreak havoc on Japanese shipping, various improvements are shown including new radar and sonar, and improved silent electric torpedoes. At 3:20 training simulation is seen. At 4:20 some of the benefits of serving in the “Silent Service” are shown including great food, camaraderie, and of course no showers for weeks at sea. At 5:00 Navy psychologists assess potential crewmembers. At 5:22 the submarine school at New London is shown. At 6:40 drills are shown at sea including crash diving. At 8:13 the escape training tower is shown. At 8:25 newly minted submariners arrive on their new boat. At 8:40 the USS Spinax radar picket boat is shown. At 8:55 USS Tunny (actually probably USS Cusk) is shown launching a V-1 rocket. At 9:09 the K1, a hunter-killer boat, is shown. At 9:24 a submarine makes an emergency surface. At 9:37 the USS Perch with an amphibious hangar on the rear of the sub is shown. At 9:45 a helicopter takes off from Perch as part of work with the UDTs. At 9:57 the UDT assault party is shown. At 11:04 the Balao class USS Cubera SS-347 is shown after GUPPY class conversion. At 11:10 a snorkel is shown in operation allowing running of the diesels without surfacing. At 11:30 an atomic bomb explodes as part of Operation Crossroads. Now the nuclear submarine USS Nautilus is shown at 11:50. The submarine harnesses the power of the atom.

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This film is part of the Periscope Film LLC archive, one of the largest historic military, transportation, and aviation stock footage collections in the USA. Entirely film backed, this material is available for licensing in 24p HD, 2k and 4k. For more information visit