Monday, February 1, 2010

88. Captain Blood (1935)

Running Time: 119 minutes
Directed By: Michael Curtiz
Written By: Casey Robinson, from novel by Rafael Sabatini
Main Cast: Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Lionel Atwill, Basil Rathbone, Ross Alexander


Despite having a hell of time getting this movie started (the DVD I recieved from Netflix was scratched and wouldn't play on any of my three DVD players), "Captain Blood" was a really fun movie, with some really great scenes and a dazzling performance by aussie Errol Flynn.

Flynn of course plays the title role of Capt. Peter Blood, an English doctor, who one night at the urgent request of rebel soldier Jeremy, goes to treat another wounded rebel soldier. Once their and once Blood tends to the wounded man, the doctor is interrupted by members of the King's court and Blood along with the other rebel soldiers that are present are taken into custody for treason. Once in court, Captain Blood is the only man who pleads not guilty, however his attempts at being set free go unheard and he's sentenced to serve as a slave in the Caribbean. Upon arriving at the Caribbean, many of Blood's comrades are purchased by Colonel Bishop for the sum of twenty pounds, but it's the Colonel's niece who ends up paying ten pounds for Captain Blood.

Peter, despite wanting no part of being on the Caribbean and still believing himself to be an innocent man, makes quick friends with the governor of Port Royal in the Caribbean and treats him for gout. When Peter puts the other doctor's on the island out of business, he then persuades them to help him get off the island, by paying him enough money to buy a boat and sail away. The doctors are more than eager to participate, as they're in dire straits, due to the medical expertise of Captain Blood. When pirates take over Port Royal, Peter and his comrades take over the pirate ship and commence in throwing Colonel Bishop overboard, before sailing away into the sunset, and deeming themselves pirates from that day forward. From there we get a very nicely put together montage of Captain Blood's rise to fame in the pirate community and soon Peter becomes the fiercest pirate to ever sail the seas. He eventually meets up with an equally unruly pirate, Levasseur and the two strike a bond, but it doesn't take long for Levasseur to break Blood's code and the two are soon engaged in a dazzling screen sword fight, with Blood striking the fatal blow on his wily foe.

I ended up having to watch this one on YouTube and I really wish I could've watched it on the DVD player, as there were some great scenes here that I'm sure weren't as dazzling on my small computer screen. "Captain Blood" is another case of "didn't expect much, but got a lot", as I really didn't think I'd enjoy a tale of 17th century pirates, but it turned out to be 100% enjoyable and Errol Flynn was a treat to watch. He and Havilland went very well together in this movie and they had a very nice chemsitry that apparently would last a long time, as they went on to make many more pictures that I certainly wouldn't mind taking in. "Captain Blood" is really just a great story of a man who went from peaceful doctor in a war torn England to slave in the Caribbean, to menacing pirate and he makes by the end of the film, he takes on one more position of power and what a final scene this is. I won't spoil it for you here, but I assure you, if you see "Captain Blood" you won't be able to contain a snicker at the finale of this movie.

RATING: 9/10 I'm deducting a point for a few dull spots, but really nothing to get into a fit over, as "Captain Blood" is certainly a film that I want to see again someday.

NEXT UP: Mutiny on the Bounty...Charles Laughton and more Clark Gable. I'll likely recieve it today in the mail from Netflix, but probably save it to watch tomorrow.

February 1, 2010 11:06am

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