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Alcoholic newspaperman Steve Bramley boards the San Capador for a restful cruise, hoping to quit drinking and begin writing a book. Also on board are Steve's friend Schulte, a private detective hoping to nab criminal Danny Checkett with a fortune in stolen bonds. Steve begins drinking, all the while observing the various stories of other passengers on board, several of whom turn out not to be who they seem to be. Written by
Jim Beaver <email@example.com>
Actor John Gilbert's career was waning by the time he was hired by 'poverty row' studio Columbia for this picture. Gilbert's lucrative contract option had been dropped by the larger and richer MGM studios because his voice had tested higher than suited his masculine screen image. With his career in shambles, Gilbert had begun to drink heavily, but thanks mainly to the support of his friend Lewis Milestone, Gilbert was hired by Columbia for this picture...with the sole condition that he remain sober throughout the production. Unfortunately, Gilbert by this time was an alcoholic unable to stay away from drinking for very long, particularly among such heavy-drinking cast members as Walter Catlett and Victor McLaglen. Keeping the cast sober proved impossible, even while filming at sea. In a rage at the mounting expenditures, Columbia president Harry Cohn telegraphed director Milestone, 'Return to studio. The cost is staggering.' Milestone wired back, 'So is the cast!' See more »
Right after the stern line is cast off, showing us the ship's starboard side is at dockside, the Captain (Walter Connolly) orders the helm, "Hard to starboard" - which would send the ship right back into the dock. See more »
This is a poorly paced and scripted little drama, that might have inspired the creators of "The Love Boat". It's all about the passengers and the crew aboard a cruise ship, and their various misadventures and intrigues.
It is the cast that redeems this picture from being a forgettable piece of mediocrity. All put in good performances - although I wasn't sure what The Three Stooges were doing in the film!! Alison Skipworth is especially memorable as a rather flirtatious rich widow.
But the film is made unforgettable by a magnificent performance from the great silent star John Gilbert, in his final film. Having fallen from super-stardom with the coming of sound, he had descended into alcoholism, and would die just two years after this film was completed. Ironically he portrays an alcoholic trying to reform - and he plays it with such dignity, grace, charm and wit, that he makes us realise today what a great screen actor we lost in John Gilbert. A sad final role perhaps, but he at last proved to the world that he could have been a fine talkie actor.
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