6.7/10
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15 user 6 critic

Outward Bound (1930)

Unrated | | Drama, Fantasy | 29 November 1930 (USA)
Later remade as "Between Two Worlds."

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(by), (screen play)
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1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Beryl Mercer ...
...
Thompson - the Examiner (as Dudley Diggs)
...
Ann
...
...
Lyonel Watts ...
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Mrs. Cliveden-Banks (as Allison Skipworth)
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Storyline

Henry and Ann are a young loving couple who have made a secret pact which they plan on executing at midnight. It involves stowing away on a passenger ship and leaving behind their beloved dog Laddy, a move they consider bittersweet. They seem somewhat apprehensive concerning their pact. Aboard the ship, a young man named Tom Prior, who seems to like his booze a little too much, has a feeling that something about the sailing is rather queer as everyone to who he speaks seems not to remember with who they are meeting or where they are going. The only exception is elderly socialite Mrs. Cliveden-Banks, who is off to meet her husband, Bunny. The only other passengers aboard are Catholic priest Reverend William Duke, wealthy business owner Mr. Lingley for who Tom used to work, and an uneducated working class elderly woman named Mrs. Midget. The only crew member is Scrubby, the steward. Tom eventually deciphers the nature of their trip, quicker than most that have taken it before have done.... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

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Language:

Release Date:

29 November 1930 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Vitaphone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Beryl Mercer, Dudley Digges, and Lyonel Watts all repeat their roles from the stage version. See more »

Connections

Remade as Between Two Worlds (1944) See more »

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User Reviews

 
How Will You Do Before The Great Examiner?
27 March 2008 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The story of the man who wrote Outward Bound is probably more interesting than the play itself if that's possible. Sutton Vane was an actor who joined the army at the outbreak of World War I and was invalided out due to a bad case of shell-shock. The horrible memory of the war stayed with him even though he tried to go back to performing.

The play Outward Bound was written by Vane as a catharsis, his own message about how differently people view life at the moment of judgment. Vane could not interest any of the mainstream producers in London to back his play, he raised the money and produced it himself. It struck a chord with post World War I audiences in first the United Kingdom and then in America.

When Warner Brothers got the rights to the play they were lucky indeed to get several of the original cast from Broadway to repeat their roles for the screen. Leslie Howard, Lyonel Watts, Dudley Digges and Beryl Mercer did these parts on Broadway in 1924 when the play ran for 144 performances.

Several people find themselves on board a most mysterious ship which seems to be continually traveling in fog and only one crewman, a steward is on duty. It turns out that only a young couple, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., and Helen Chandler, seem to know what's happening. They're all dead and the ship is heading towards a meeting with the Great Examiner who will determine their fates.

Why they and steward Alec B. Francis are the only ones of the passengers that knows what's happening and what happens to each one you'll have to see the film for. Outward Bound with a message that's less Christian centered might very well find an audience today. Unless you believe that their are similar ships carrying people from an Islamic, Jewish, Buddhist, etc. cultures to their fates which the author by no means excludes.

Though melodramatic in spots, Outward Bound is still a haunting film about people on the brink of eternity.


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