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In 1870, Yankee sea captain O'Keefe finds himself stranded after a mutiny on the Micronesian island of Yap, where the financial potential of copra (dried cocoanut) excites him. But a German company already has a monopoly...and very low production because hard work is alien to dwellers in paradise. On a later voyage, between affairs with island maidens, O'Keefe struggles to find the key to the wealth of Yap. But before he can carve out the empire of his dreams, he must also contend with assorted villains... Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
O'Keefe returns to Hong Kong and stock footage is shown of people walking down a street. However, the movie is set in the 1870s and the footage is of 1950s Hong Kong. Giveaways include signs such as "No Motors". See more »
A deeply subversive, yet utterly enjoyable (and kinda true)South Seas movie from the 50's. Burt Lancaster is a typical 19th century trader/pirate whose only ambition is to make money out of the "natives", and fast. He comes to a Pacific Island Utopia where no one has to work... because who needs money?...
Vastly underrrated, this film makes all kinds of points. The Natives (half of whom, admittedly,are white guys in blackface)are dangerous quasi-cannibals. But the white guys (including Burt!)are plain Euro- Trash. The head chief, and Burt's head wife (Joan Rice in a lovely performance - she takes the cliché of the innocent island girl and makes a performance out of it with her eyelashes) are the real heroes.
Did I mention the Chinese dentist who knows more about investments than Burt? Or the German philosophy student who can relate to the natives better than Europeans? Filmed on location in Fiji with a cast that seem to be having the time of their lives, HIS MAJESTY O'KEEFE is a very simple, yet completely fun relic of the non-PC days. (P.S. Check out the other scripts by Borden Chase. Some good ones there...)
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