20 user 9 critic

Down to the Sea in Ships (1949)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Drama | 1949 (UK)
Whaling ship captain Bering Joy takes his grandson Jed on a whaling trip to teach him core life values while First Mate Dan Lunceford is tasked with tutoring Jed.



(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Complete credited cast:
Jed Joy
Slush Tubbs
Andrew L. Bush
Berry Kroeger ...
Britton (as Henry Morgan)
Benjamin Harris
Luke Sewell
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
New Bedford Neighbor (scenes deleted)
Hubert E. Flanagan ...
Capt. Rumley (scenes deleted)
New Bedford Neighbor (scenes deleted)


At the end of the 19th century, Massachusetts whaling ship captain Bering Joy takes his grandson Jed on a whaling expedition.The old captain wants to teach his spoiled grandson real life values such as honesty, courage, wisdom, fairness and hard work.At the same time, First Mate Dan Lunceford is entrusted with tutoring the boy in his schoolwork.A small competition and rivalry starts when both men,Captain Joy and First Mate Lunceford, strive to become young Jed's male role model.Captain Joy may have the wisdom dictated by his life's experiences but young Jed's imagination is rather captivated by Dan Lunceford's seafaring tales. Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Thar She Blows!


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

1949 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Capitães do Mar  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


In 1948 Brenda Joyce was announced for a role in Down to the Sea in Ships. But she decided to retire at that time and leave Hollywood, eventually not appearing in the movie. See more »


Jed says that the longest river in the world is the Mississippi River. The Mississippi River is the second largest in the USA behind the Missouri River and would be considered the longest river in the world. See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: NEW BEDFORD 1887 See more »


Referenced in The Screen Writer (1950) See more »


Rolling Home
Arranged by Cyril J. Mockridge and Edward B. Powell
See more »

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User Reviews

Do you like sailing ships, whaling....?
27 July 2001 | by (Wyoming) – See all my reviews

In this film progress is overtaking the old and outdated: Captain Joy (L. Barrymore) is a stern old man set in his ways and his first mate (R. Widmark) is a modern man with modern ideas. Add to this a catalyst in the form of the Captain's grandson (Dean Stockwell) and tensions mount.

I love most sailing films and this is no exception. Good acting all around. Somewhat of a tearjerker, although that's not bad in this instance. Save the whales advocates may not care for this movie because it shows whales being taken and blubber removed to prepare oil. I wonder where they got the idea for the ship to hit an iceberg?---At least it didn't sink.

This movie may be hard to find in video format, but I've seen it aired a couple of times in the last few years.

I gave this one a 9 of 10 mostly because it was a good story with fine acting. Also the ship scenes were realistic and full of action.

A nice clean movie your whole family will enjoy even if it is in black & white.

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