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Botany Bay (1953)

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In 1787 prisoners from London's Newgate Gaol are to be shipped to New South Wales. Hugh Tallant is an American medical student whom, we learn at sea, was falsely imprisoned. Because of his ... See full summary »



(screenplay), (novel), 1 more credit »
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Title: Botany Bay (1953)

Botany Bay (1953) on IMDb 6/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Hugh Tallant
Capt. Paul Gilbert
Sally Munroe
Gov. Phillips (as Sir Cedric Hardwicke)
Murray Matheson ...
Rev. Mortimer Thynne
Dorothy Patten ...
Mrs. Nellie Garth
John Hardy ...
Nat Garth
Hugh Pryse ...
Ned Inching
Malcolm Lee Beggs ...
Nick Sabb
Anita Sharp-Bolster ...
Moll Cudlip (as Anita Bolster)
Tom Oakly
Alec Harford ...
Brig-keeper Jenkins
Noel Drayton ...
Second Mate Spencer
Brandon Toomey ...
Guard (as Brendan Toomey)
Ben Wright ...
Deck Officer Green


In 1787 prisoners from London's Newgate Gaol are to be shipped to New South Wales. Hugh Tallant is an American medical student whom, we learn at sea, was falsely imprisoned. Because of his attempt to escape, evil Captain Gilbert decides to return him to England on charges of mutiny. Events, including arrival of plague, keep Tallant busy in New South Wales. Written by Ed Stephan <>

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SAVAGE as the Great Continent They Invaded!


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Release Date:

7 October 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Botany Bay  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


May be the only movie in which the leading man, Alan Ladd, is subjected to that naval punishment known as keelhauling - being dragged under the ship's keel from a rope that looped beneath the vessel, which could end up in dismemberment or death by drowning. See more »


Capt. Paul Gilbert: Mr. Green, you will make preparations for keelhauling the prisoners.
Second Mate Spencer: Captain Gilbert, no man has been keelhauled on an English ship for fifty years.
Capt. Paul Gilbert: Oh, I don't think it's been that long.
See more »

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User Reviews

Still haunted by Mason's villainy!
16 July 2003 | by (Portland, Oregon) – See all my reviews

As of this date, the only other IMDb comment on this title is one with which I can agree. I saw it during its neighborhood run in the year of its release and recall that it did, indeed, look like the budget must have been rather minuscule. But James Mason's performance is one that I can still remember as entirely disturbing for a young moviegoer not yet in his teens. What an actor! He made this film, which Paramount obviously treated as just a programmer, quite an experience. If remade today, I suppose we'd have Mel Gibson in the Alan Ladd role and, perhaps, Geoffrey Rush trying to imitate Mason's indelible portrait, plus some authentic Australian locations. But once was enough, for it was quite a grim experience, and the brutality that would probably be gruesomely depicted today would be more than I'd pay to see!

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