REBELLION ON BOARD
Original title: Mutiny on the Bounty
Duration: 178 minutes
Direction: Lewis Milestone
Script: Charles Lederer
Song: Bronislau Kaper
Photography: Robert Surtees
Distribution: Marlon Brando, Trevor Howard, Richard Harris, Hugh Griffith, Richard Haydn, Tarita, Percy Herbert, Duncan Lamont, Gordon Jackson, Chips Rafferty, Noel Purcell, Ashley Cowan, Eddie Byrne, Frank Silvera, Tim Seely y Keith McConnell
Producer: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM)
Synopsis: In 1787, the Bounty sailed from Portsmouth harbor to Tahiti to load the fruit of the breadfruit. Captain Bligh, who wants to get to the island as soon as possible, imposes an iron discipline on board. When they arrive, the crew is faced with a true paradise that has nothing to do with the hell experienced during the trip. (FilmAffinity)
‘Rebellion on board’ It is one of these cursed classics that have been put aside. A movie shot in the early 60’s and that is a remake of ‘The Tragedy of the Bounty’ who starred Clark Gable 30 years before. The film tells the story of the Bounty expedition, a ship that was commissioned to go to Tahiti and return with copies of the breadfruit tree to plant in the UK and use it as a superfood. Spoiler: everything ended like the rosary of dawn.
‘Rebellion on board’ We can divide it into three parts, each lasting approximately one hour. The first hour tells us about the trip, the second the stay in Tahiti and the third the rebellion and subsequent flight of the mutineers. The film recreates itself too much in the first hour and leaves the last one as something faster, airing the different moments too quickly. It would have been more interesting, I think, to spend more time on the rebellion itself and the aftermath of the mutineers and those remaining loyal to Captain Bligh.
The tape is old school. Overture, first act, intermission, second act and closing. A movie that cost a real pasture for the time, 19 million. From the beginning it was involved in controversy by the specialized press that criticized the attitude of Marlon brando on the set. A Brando that he was the big star of the show and that he would later marry his filming partner, Tarita, perhaps the data that has most transcended the history of this film.
As for the film, it is a really impressive waste of resources. Ship cinema has always been very difficult to shoot, but as early as 1962, Lewis Milestone, he realized that you can shoot movies with ships and on the high seas if you want. That filming in natural settings gives it a plus that the green screen cinema we are used to now does not have. The beauty of the landscape, the boat, the islands, the beaches or the costumes add up.
On the acting plane Marlon brando steals all the limelight from the cast. The actor, more restrained in words than in other films, is in a large part of the film an entity that we see in the background and in passing, but when he is the protagonist he looks like no other. I have already expressed on numerous occasions in this blog that he is an actor that I admire, and here, although it is not one of his great works, it is a new lesson in his acting skills. It especially shines in that final stretch of the movie on the Pitcairn. Trevor Howard Y Richard Harris complete the stellar cast.
‘Rebellion on board’ It is a classic that has been forgotten by the bad press it received at the time and by the box office failure that it turned out to be. A film that is one of the best examples of marine adventure cinema. Shot 60 years ago and it looks like a recent movie, a prodigy.
The best: The work of photography, decoration, costumes, music, special effects … the technical waste.
Worst: The unfair criticism it received and that it has remained for posterity as a cursed film.