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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 <email@example.com>
There are many stories of the sea and the men who are drawn to it in ships. If one is looking for a film which awakens the ancient memories of the ocean, it's awesome power, it's ability to beckon and then destroy them, " Moby Dick " is such a film. In 1956, director John Huston passed up the opportunity to play the self-destructive Captain Ahab, and chose instead veteran actor Gregory Peck. Despite the fact many thought Peck was not the right man for the part (including Peck) the end product proved naysayers wrong. The film itself contains several direct passages from Herman Melvile's novel, which literally urges it along. From the beginning, with the main character stating Call me Ishmael this film invites the audience to witness whaling at the turn of the 19th century. It is the beginning of a young man's search for adventure and experience and encounters 'Elija' (Royal Dano) who warns him and his friend Queequeg (Friedrich Von Ledebur), that death awaits the 'Pequod'. Shipping from the port of New Bedford, the ship sails out to hunt whales for their oil. What Ishmael (Richard Basehart) learns is that his Captain is hell bent on personal revenge on one gigantic white whale called Moby Dick who crippled and disfigured him. Driven by incessant hatred, the Captain will not rest until the whale is dead. To that end, he will gamble his life, his crew, his purpose and ultimately his ship. Leo Genn plays Starbuck, the second in command, who will try and stop his Captain if he can. Harry Andrews plays Stubbs, the second mate. When the ship finally encounters the White Whale, it's a war of wills and makes for drama at it's very best. Perhaps that's what makes this movie a true Classic. ****
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