The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea (1976)

R  |   |  Drama, Mystery, Thriller  |  5 April 1976 (UK)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 883 users  
Reviews: 34 user | 14 critic

After his father dies, a disturbed young boy plots to take revenge on the new man in his mother's life.



(novel), (written for the screen by)
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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Anne Osborne
Jim Cameron
Jonathan Kahn ...
Jonathan Osborne
Margo Cunningham ...
Elizabeth Palmer
Earl Rhodes ...
Paul Tropea ...
Number Two
Gary Lock ...
Number Four
Stephen Black ...
Number Five
Peter Clapham ...
Richard Pettit
Jennifer Tolman ...
Mary Ingram


Widowed now for close to four years, Anne Osborne, who now operates the antiques shop formerly owned by her husband David, and their son, Jonathan Osborne, live in a small, English seaside town. Both Anne and Jonathan still miss David even after all these years. Going through puberty, Jonathan uses something he finds in his bedroom to explore the emerging thoughts of sexuality going through his mind. Although Anne knows Jonathan sneaks out of the house early in the morning against her orders, she is unaware that he is attending meetings of a secret society of five boys, who refer to each other only by a cardinal number, their rank within the group as assigned by "The Chief", number one. The Chief is an arrogant, sadistic pseudo-intellectual who needs to show his power and dominance over the other four in whatever means possible. He largely considers them immature as he spouts off his Nietzschean philosophies, centering on that adults create rules that ultimately disrupt the natural ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He gave his soul to the sea and his heart to a woman. Their love will arouse you. The story will disturb you. The ending will startle you.


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Release Date:

5 April 1976 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Der Weg allen Fleisches  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


First English language filmed adaptation of a novel by Japanese writer Yukio Mishima. See more »


Referenced in Mystery Science Theater 3000: Angels Revenge (1995) See more »


Sea Dream Theme
Written by Kris Kristofferson
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User Reviews

Waaah - splash!
19 March 2007 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

A spooky 'erotic' romantic thriller, with undertones and imagery of both THE INNOCENTS and LORD OF THE FLIES and even RYANS DAUGHTER this film had a bit of a notorious reputation in the late 70s because of the peephole sex scenes and the all too graphic mutilation of the family cat. Plenty of seniors went stampeding from the cinemas gasping especially after the cat got the chop, hissing and howling. The sight of Sarah Miles masturbating gave a us all a kooky preview to WHITE MISCHIEF made ten years later. There has been plenty of criticism about the translation of this Japanese novel into the foggy coast of Dover, but really it does not matter because the almost MOONSPINNERS-like spooky seaside look adds to what is genuinely an usual and compelling romantic drama with deeply strange and uneasy subplot about the wrath of destructive misguided young boys. Kris Kristofferson was every woman's preferred seaman in the 70s! Then Babs snared him in her horrible remake of A STAR IS BORN. SAILOR was a big hit in its day and deserves another look. It is eerie and romantic and quite dangerous. You almost expect Sarah Miles to narrate (all REBECCA-like) "last night I dreamed I went to masturbate...." I saw it on a double with CABARET. Those were the days!

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