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Ferry to Hong Kong (1959)

5.6
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 269 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 1 critic

Mark Conrad, a habitual drunk and troublemaker with a shady past, is expelled by Hong Kong police after one too many bar fights. He's sent to Macao on the Fa Tsan, a ferry owned by Captain ... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Mark Bertram Conrad (as Curt Jurgens)
...
Captain Hart
...
Liz Ferrers
Jeremy Spenser ...
Miguel Henriques, 1st Officer
Noel Purcell ...
Joe Skinner, Chief Engineer
Margaret Withers ...
Miss Carter
John Wallace ...
Police Inspector (Hong Kong)
Roy Chiao ...
Johnny Sing-Up
Shelley Shen ...
Foo Soo
Louis Seto ...
Tommy Cheng
...
Yen, Sing-Up's Partner
Ronald Decent ...
Portuguese Major (Macao)
Don Carlos ...
Nick Kendall ...
2nd Police Inspector (Hong Kong)
Kwan-San Lam ...
1st Guardian
Edit

Storyline

Mark Conrad, a habitual drunk and troublemaker with a shady past, is expelled by Hong Kong police after one too many bar fights. He's sent to Macao on the Fa Tsan, a ferry owned by Captain Hart. Conrad's papers are out of order and Macao refuses him entry. Unable to go ashore, Conrad is a permanent passenger on the ferry with Hart, who detests him. It's all one long, lazy voyage for Conrad until one fateful trip when an encounter with a typhoon and pirates forces Conrad to choose between an aimless drifter's life and becoming a man again. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

typhoon | pirate | shipwreck | See All (3) »


Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 October 1959 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

Visa pour Hong Kong  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Average Shot Length = ~7.3 seconds. Median Shot Length = ~7 seconds. See more »

Soundtracks

Ferry to Hong Kong
Traditional
Arranged by Robert Sharples
Lyrics by Paddy Roberts
See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Once a bum, always a bum."
13 October 2011 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Coming from the era when the Rank Organisation was trying to compete with the Hollywood studios with increasingly lavish international co-productions, Lewis Gilbert's Ferry to Hong Kong is one of those films that's sold as much on its location and CinemaScope colour photography as its story, which ambles along with the tide almost as much as its dishevelled hero. Curd Jurgens is the piece of human driftwood expelled from Hong Kong after one bar brawl too many, only for the Macao authorities to refuse him entry and the British refuse to allow him back into their colony. Not that Jurgens' status as a man without a country worries him half as much as Orson Welles' pompous ferry skipper, who finds himself stuck with a very unwelcome non-paying passenger who's more popular with the passengers and crew than he is. Chief among his allies below decks is Noel Purcell, the engineer with a family in every port, and chief among those on the upper decks on his side is Sylvia Syms' schoolteacher, the kind of dish who naturally is increasingly attracted to the scruffy loser who doesn't want to be redeemed - you know, just like real life…

The story may half-heartedly attempt to forge a then modern-day link with Joseph Conrad's failures running from themselves in the far east, even going so far as to name Jurgens' character Conrad in case people don't make the connection themselves, but there's nothing profound going on here. Not a great deal happens until the ferry runs into bad weather and Milton Reid's pirates in the second half, but it's a likable glossy entertainment with all the stops pulled out and a memorably shifting accent from Awesome. The CinemaScope and vivid Eastmancolor are perfect for the bright neon nights of 50s Hong Kong and the film betrays few signs of its troubled production – more than a few of the problems due to Welles, who, for all his scene-stealing on camera was a nightmare to deal with (pretty much par for the course on any film he didn't direct himself). Expect greatness and you're bound to be disappointed, but if you're looking for an undemanding, handsomely staged melodrama with colourful characters in exotic places doing exactly what you'd expect, the film delivers.


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