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DATE: 1945

LENGTH: 35 min

CATEGORY: Educational & Instructional, Sound, Black & White

DIRECTOR BY AND STARRING: Gene Kelly

PRODUCER/PUBLISHER: U.S. Navy

Summary

Gene Kelly directs and stars in this wartime naval “training” film. Kelly plays the role of Seaman Bob Lucas, a troubled and angry “fireman” whose ship was sunk in battle. Many sailors died at sea, but Lucas lived through it and suffers from what now might be termed “post-traumatic stress disorder.” After lashing out at everyone around him, Lucas comes to understand his emotions, and moves from illness to wellness, with the help of a wise psychiatrist. Kelly considered his performance in Combat Fatigue Irritability one of his very best. But no filmography lists it. Apart from the combat-fatigued sailors for whom the film was made, few people have ever had the chance to see it. With this release it becomes accessible to Kelly’s devoted fans and a wider public…Read The Essay


Supplementary Materials

Kerry Kelly Novick Talks about her Father’s Role in Combat Fatigue Irritability

Kerry Kelly Novick speaking
Unique Perspectives on Gene Kelly’s 1945 Film Combat Fatigue Irritability, February 11, 2014. Kerry Kelly Novick, a practicing psychoanalyst and the daughter of Gene Kelly and actress Betsy Blair, delivers a presentation to the NLM’s Board of Regents and Friends of the NLM. She tells a little about her family’s experience during WWI, discusses clips from the film, and explores the concerns of returning soldiers and ideas of survivor guilt, and moral injury.
Kerry Kelly Novick interview
Interdisciplinary and Intergenerational Connections: Personal and Professional Reflections on Gene Kelly’s 1945 Film Combat Fatigue Irritability, February 12, 2014. The National Library of Medicine interviewed Kerry Kelly Novick in connection with the digitization of the film Combat Fatigue Irritability. Here she discusses the film, her father, Gene Kelly, and her own life and career as a psychoanalyst specializing in the treatment of children.

Combat Fatigue Irritability on Circulating Now

Read PTSD and Gene Kelly’s Unknown War Time Star Turn and view the related film on Circulating Now.
Read On Combat Fatigue Irritability: Kerry Kelly Novick Part I and view the related film on Circulating Now.
Read On Combat Fatigue Irritability: Kerry Kelly Novick Part 2 and view the related film on Circulating Now.
Read On Combat Fatigue Irritability: Kerry Kelly Novick Part 3 and view the related film on Circulating Now.

Digitized Films on Combat Fatigue at the National Library of Medicine

A films still of the title frame for Save A Day.Explore films on combat fatigue in the NLM Digital Collections

Digitized Films on World War II-era Public Health at the National Library of Medicine

A films still of the title frame for Save A Day.Explore World War II-era Public Health in the NLM Digital Collections

Learn more about NLM holdings of World War II-era Public Health in The Public Health Film Goes To War

 


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