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The Old Man and the Sea (1958)

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An old Cuban fisherman's dry spell is broken when he hooks a gigantic fish that drags him out to sea. Based on Ernest Hemingway's story.


, (uncredited) | 1 more credit »


Won 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
The Old Man / Narrator
Felipe Pazos ...
The Boy (as Felipe Pazos Jr.)
Cafe Proprietor
Don Blackman ...
Hand Wrestler
Joey Ray ...
Mary Hemingway ...
Richard Alameda ...
Tony Rosa ...
Carlos Rivero ...
Robert Alderette ...


Now an old man, a lifelong fisherman sets out to sea to ply his trade as he has done all of his life. He's not had much good fortune of late and has gone almost three months without a major catch while others are catching one or even two large marlins every week. Many of the locals make fun of him and some say he's too old now to be fishing but he still loves what he does and is encouraged by a young boy who loves him and has faith in him. On this day he hooks the fish of a lifetime, a marlin that is larger than his skiff. As it slowly pulls him out to sea, the old man reminisces about his past, his successes and the high points of his life. When he does finally manage to land the fish he has to fight off sharks who are feeding on it as he tries to return to his Cuban village. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

fisherman | sea | fish | old man | marlin | See All (48) »


SPENCER TRACY in his most suspenseful role...ERNEST HEMINGWAY'S story of Heroism...Defeat...Victory!


Adventure | Drama


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Release Date:

11 October 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El viejo y el mar  »

Box Office


$5,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Director John Sturges replaced Fred Zinnemann. See more »


(at around 30 mins) There's a white fishing line extending upward from the marlin as it jumps out of the water, which is impossible because Spencer Tracy is sitting at water level. As explained in the end titles, this footage was obtained when a man named Gassell caught a record-sized Marlin at the Cabo Blanco Fishing Club in Peru. See more »


Referenced in Suits: Rewind (2012) See more »


Cancion del Pescador
Music by Dimitri Tiomkin
Lyrics by Nestor Amaral
See more »

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User Reviews

A movie about an old man and his marlin.
7 May 1999 | by (Jersey City, NJ) – See all my reviews

One of Spencer Tracy's top performances; it goes down with "Captain's Courageous." Most often a book is better then the movie but in this case the movie brings the book to life. This is due to the somewhat larger then life character of Tracy. The story, although classic and definitely worth while reading, is best summed up by Tracy's acting technique.

This was no location film which means the greater portion of realism must come from the actor. A story about a man thinking and talking to himself while he is on a boat for three days would be difficult for any actor. Tracy brings the truest sense of humility and courage to this role. It is enjoyable reading but I encourage anyone to see this movie.

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Why hold onto the line? The_Romantic
Narrator alanjj
Top Spencer Tracy Efforts? kag2-1
Symbolism carlsells
What Ever Happened to Felipe Pazos? jimg-19
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