The Bedford Incident

  • PG
  • James B Harris (1965)
  • UK
  • 101 min
The Bedford Incident
Film Review
Reviewed By
4 out of 5

This superior Cold War sea drama-cum-chase movie was directed by Stanley Kubrick's one-time producer James B Harris, and explores similar nuclear fears to Kubrick's Dr Strangelove, but in more sober fashion. Richard Widmark gives a notable performance as the captain of a nuclear-armed American naval destroyer, who has become overly zealous in his hunt for Russian subs. Sidney Poitier plays a journalist who comes along for what turns out to be an exciting ride. Look carefully and you will spot a young Donald Sutherland in an early role as a pharmacist's mate.

Plot Summary

Cold War adventure starring Richard Widmark and Sidney Poitier. A journalist joins the crew of a destroyer assigned to hunt down enemy submarines in the north Atlantic. But the relationship between the authoritarian captain and his meek, young ensign has disastrous results.

Cast and crew


Captain Eric Finlander
Richard Widmark
Ben Munceford
Sidney Poitier
Ensign Ralston
James MacArthur
Lieutenant Commander Chester Potter
Martin Balsam
Sonar operator
Wally Cox
Commander Wolfgang Schrepke
Eric Portman
Commander Allison
Michael Kane
Chief Pharmacist Mate McKinley
Phil Brown
Lieutenant Bascombe
Gary Cockrell
Lieutenant Beckman
Brian Davies
Pharmacist's mate Strauss
Warren Stanhope
Pharmacist's mate
Donald Sutherland


James B Harris

Other Information

Black and White
Theatrical distributor: 
Columbia Picture Corp. Ltd
Available on video and DVD
Certificate PG