Operation Petticoat – Blu-ray Review

Operation Petticoat is a 1959 American World War II submarine comedy film that is presented in Eastmancolor from Universal-International, produced by Robert Arthur, and directed by Blake Edwards that features Cary Grant and Tony Curtis.

The film tells us, in a flashback, the misadventures of the fictional U. S. Navy submarine, the USS Sea Tiger, during the opening days of the United States involvement in World War II. Some elements of the screenplay were taken from actual events that happened with some of the Pacific Fleet’s submarines during the war. Other members of the cast include several actors who went on to become television stars in the 1960s and 1970s, including Gavin MacLeod of The Love Boat and McHale’s Navy, Marion Ross of Happy Days, and Dick Sargent of Bewitched.

Paul King, Joseph Stone, Stanley Shapiro and Maurice Richlin were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Writing for their work on Operation Petticoat. The film was also the basis for a television series in 1977 that featured John Astin in Grant’s role.

The Film Itself (4/5):

Operation Petticoat is a film that absolutely requires that you be somewhat of a fan of Cary Grant.  I say that as you have to be familiar and enjoy not only his works, but the works of cinema that are similar to his.  While the film at hand here is not a top-notch classic comedy, it is definitely one that allows for a great time for those experiencing it at home, and can really appreciate some of the differences in what was considered to he comedy in the late 1950s/early 1960s versus what we consider to be comedy today.  The overall story of this film, while it has its comedic moments, does a nice job at retaining the more serious aspect of the storyline and does a really nice job at portraying it through to the end.

Picture Quality (5/5):

Offering an all new and remastered look into this Cary Grant feature, Operation Petticoat looks absolutely amazing as it plays out across viewers televisions.  While definitely showing the work and effort that went into making this cleaned up available, it does a really nice job at maintaining that original feel that viewers once had during its initial release.  The overall colorization of the scenes, while not overly bright or vivid, they were very clean and continue to do a really nice job at presenting the era in which this story takes place.

Audio Quality (3/5):

Packaged with a mono audio track, the Olive Signature release of Operation Petticoat offers a very nicely done and clean experience for the story that they’re trying to tell.  Unfortunately, there really weren’t any pieces that stood out, mostly because of the overall mono experience; but despite it not being as immersive as I would have liked it to be, it was clean and my wife and I were able to hear and understand everything as the film played out on our living room television.

The Packaging (4/5):

Operation Petticoat comes packaged in a thinner, clear, yet standardized single-disc Blu-ray amaray case.  Within that case is the standard Blu-ray copy of the film, the disc featuring artwork that is relative to the film and different from that of the case art.  There is also a small information booklet that contains a written copy of A Comedy of Demilitarization: Operation Petticoat.  There are no DVD copies included nor are there any digital copy redemption pamphlets.  A thicker style slipcover has been provided that features the same piece of artwork as the case.


Special Features (5/5):

I was pleasantly surprised to see how many special features came packaged with the release of Operation Petticoat.  There’s a decent array of content that allows the viewer to explore beyond the film as well as further explore some of the work that went into making this film available; featuring footage from when it was originally released.  Included with this release is:

  • Feature Audio Commentary By Film Critic Adrian Martin
  • That’s What Everybody Says About Me – With Jennifer Edwards & Actress Lesley Ann Warren
  • The Brave Crew Of The Petticoat – With Actors Gavin MacLeod & Marion Ross
  • The Captain And His Double: Cary Grant’s Struggle Of The Self – With Marc Eliot, Author Of Cary Grant: A Biography
  • Universal Newsreel Footage Of Cary Grant And The Opening Of Operation Petticoat At The Radio City Music Hall
  • Archival Footage Of The Submarine USS Baloo, Which Doubled As The USS Sea Tiger In Operation Petticoat
  • Essay Written By Film Critic Chris Fujiwara

Technical Specs:


Codec: MPEG-4 AVC

Resolution: 1080p

Original Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1


English: Mono


English SDH


Original Film: 124 minutes

Final Thoughts:

Overall, I’m really glad that I was given the opportunity to check out Operation Petticoat.  Previously, I had only had the chance to see a handful of Grant’s works, so I was really looking forward to this when I saw it arrive at my doorstep.  The story of this film, while slightly serious is nicely done and considerably lighthearted throughout.  The overall visual and audible presentation of this Blu-ray release was nicely done, and offered a clean and clear view into this story.  There are a decent amount of special features that have been provided on this Blu-ray, I can honestly say that I was not disappointed one bit by this release.  If you’re considering grabbing this movie for your collection, I would definitely recommend it if you’re slightly knowledgeable about Cary Grant’s works.  Operation Petticoat comes out tomorrow, so be sure to grab it when you can!

Note: This Blu-ray was sent to us for review. This has not affected our judgement or editorial process in any way. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding this process.