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All at Sea (1957)
"Barnacle Bill" (original title)

 -  Comedy  -  21 December 1957 (USA)
7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 547 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 2 critic

A seasick sea captain commands an amusement pier despite local opposition.

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(story), (screenplay)
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Title: All at Sea (1957)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Captain William Horatio Ambrose
Irene Browne ...
Mrs. Barrington
Maurice Denham ...
Crowley
...
Tommy
Victor Maddern ...
Figg
Allan Cuthbertson ...
Chailey
Harold Goodwin ...
Duckworth
Richard Wattis ...
Registrar of Shipping
...
Garrod
George Rose ...
Bullen
Lloyd Lamble ...
Superintendent Browning
Harry Locke ...
Reporter
Mike Morgan ...
Larry
Max Butterfield ...
Phil
Donald Churchill ...
Roy
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Storyline

Captain Ambrose comes from a long line of distinguished sailors...but is all too susceptible to seasickness. After the war, he buys himself a nautical command on shore; a decrepit amusement pier at the British resort town Sandcastle-on-Sea, whose prim town council has outlawed arcade games as a form of gambling! Running the pier like a naval vessel, the captain's determination to make it a modern, going concern meets steady opposition. But with an unexpected new ally, he pursues a remarkable scheme to liberate his "ship" from land authorities... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

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Details

Country:

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Release Date:

21 December 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

All at Sea  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

When Ambrose arrives in France a close-up shot shows him taking the cotton wool out of his ears. In the next shot the cotton wool is still in his ears. See more »

Crazy Credits

Against a background of high seas, the opening credit text rolls with the waves, up off the screen and down under water, with motion so realistic it almost makes the audience seasick. See more »

Soundtracks

Movie music
Performed by Sinfonia of London
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User Reviews

 
Charming!
30 April 2005 | by (San Francisco) – See all my reviews

Alec Guinness is wonderful in this movie. As the movie starts, he wanders around London with a reporter in tow, carrying a keg of rum. He walks into a bank and bangs on the counter, demanding drinking glasses. A stunned Donald Pleasance, playing a bank clerk, stares back and says "we don't have glasses." Alec Guinness looks around in disbelief and says "No glasses? What do you do when famous people come in here?" It's this kind of humor that permeates the film.

Guinness purchases a run-down resort pier and strolls through the place, which is filled with bored pensioners watching cheap stage shows. The pier has been falling apart for decades, but he breathes new life into it by creating a dance hall and offering spirits. The local politicians have other ideas, and Guiness finds out that they have hoodwinked him and, through the rights of eminent domain, plan to purchase the pier back at half the price. He outwits them by registering the pier as a ship, enraging the politicians, and offers "cruises" for people prone to seasickness. It's a cruise that never goes anywhere, but offers food, dancing, music, and even a radar screen for the more mature folks. It's all very proper and charming. Guinness shows off his dance moves, there's a climax involving a dredging boat, and then a bouncy little song at the end accompanied by the ghosts of Guinness's ancestors (all played by him, of course); the song goes on just long enough to make you laugh like hell at the weirdness of it.

This might not be one of Guinness's best roles, but it's still a fun movie.


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