This classic story by Herman Melville revolves around Captain Ahab and his obsession with a huge whale, Moby Dick. The whale caused the loss of Ahab's leg years before, leaving Ahab to stomp the boards of his ship on a peg leg. Ahab is so crazed by his desire to kill the whale, that he is prepared to sacrifice everything, including his life, the lives of his crew members, and even his ship to find and destroy his nemesis, Moby Dick. Written by
E.W. DesMarais <firstname.lastname@example.org>
John Huston shopped the film around Hollywood for three years before United Artists and Moulin Productions agreed to produce it. It was a dark, depressing story, without any female parts or love interest, so Hollywood shunned the screenplay. Warners only entered the agreement for theatrical distribution on the condition that a big-name actor take the role of Ahab. Many thought Gregory Peck was miscast, and Peck actually thought that Huston himself would have been the best choice for the role. See more »
Scenes shot on the deck of the ship have a background painted to look like the sky. Joints in the painted plywood sheets or canvas can be quite clearly seen. See more »
If you have ever read the Herman Melville story of Moby Dick, then you will know how hard it must have been for John Huston to turn it into film. Thanks to Ray Bradbury's screenplay and great acting, this film became a classic. That it is not in the top 250 IMDB rated films is a shame. I hope that this is due to it's limited showings and therefore not being seen by many of this site's users. From the start to the finish the film is well paced. The casting of Gregory Peck as Captain Ahab was wise. He commands the role well. Orson Welles appearance as the minister is also a treat to behold. Welles shows that he can add so much to a film whether it be a small role or a large one. Special effects are the only thing that could have been a bit better done. However, in 1956, depicting a great white whale with an attitude was not an easy accomplishment film making wise. This film does go into the relationship between man and God, so some folks will no doubt be prejudiced against the film. Keep in mind the story's time period and locale. The seafaring men of New England really did once hold God close to their heart. Melville's use of a whale to depict the struggle was good. Huston getting it onto film was even better. Sorry, I like the film better than the book. MM
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