When the U.S. forces withdraw from Java, ahead of the Japanese invasion, U.S. Navy doctor Corydon M. Wassell coordinates the remaining wounded servicemen and leads them to safety towards the last Allied evacuation points.


Cecil B. DeMille


Alan Le May (screenplay) (as Alan LeMay), Charles Bennett (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Gary Cooper ... Dr. Corydon M. Wassell
Laraine Day ... Madeleine
Signe Hasso ... Bettina
Dennis O'Keefe ... Benjamin 'Hoppy' Hopkins
Carol Thurston ... Tremartini (Three Martini)
Carl Esmond ... Lt. Dirk Van Daal
Paul Kelly ... Murdock
Elliott Reid ... William 'Andy' Anderson
Stanley Ridges ... Cmdr. William B. 'Bill' Goggins
Renny McEvoy ... Johnny Leeweather
Oliver Thorndike Oliver Thorndike ... Alabam
Philip Ahn ... Ping
Barbara Britton ... Ruth


As the Japanese sweep through the East Indies during World War II, Dr. Wassell is determined to escape from Java with some crewmen of the cruiser Marblehead. Based on a true story of how Dr. Wassell saved a dozen or so wounded sailors who were left behind when able bodied men were evacuated to Australia. Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama of Loyalty and Love! The Story the Whole World Has Heard About!


Passed | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Gary Cooper pulled rank and flat out refused to have his well known hairy chest shaved for the bathtub scene in the final reel. See more »


During the evacuation convoy, the trucks are alternately shown on paved and dirt roads between shots. See more »


Dr. Corydon M. Wassell: Only those who are able to walk can go. All stretcher cases must stay here.
Cmdr. William B. 'Bill' Goggins: Let me see that, Cory. Well, that dry docks me, doesn't it?
Dr. Corydon M. Wassell: Bill...
Dutch Army Captain: You must choose the men you are taking, Doctor.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the closing Paramount logo Cecil B. DeMille addresses the audience over a blank screen: "Ladies and gentlemen just a moment please. Since the completion of The Story of Dr. Wassell, we have heard that Hoppy is alive. A prisoner of war of the Japanese. Thank you." See more »


Featured in Cecil B. DeMille: American Epic (2004) See more »

User Reviews

Hoppy Survived
29 August 2001 | by chisumSee all my reviews

This is an entertaining movie if somewhat dated ,still worth an occassional veiwing. Gary Cooper carries the film with a great performance showing him for the star he was. The cast is packed with good character actors and actresses,and is filmed in colour,based on a true story that De Mille heard on the radio as told by FDR. The story of how the doctor rescues some badly injured sailors in the Phillipines is told in a flagwaving way,with humor and tragedy side by side. One reveiwer asks about Hoppy a badly wounded soldier who is left stranded on the wrong side of a demolished bridge,the film shows the Japanese closing in on him and a nurse then they disapear. In C.B,deMILLES BIOGRAPHY he reveals that Hoppy did survive and at the end of the credits he told the film audience this fact.

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Release Date:

4 July 1944 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cecil B. DeMille's The Story of Dr. Wassell See more »

Filming Locations:

Metapa, Chiapas, Mexico See more »


Box Office


$2,720,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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