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The Island (1980)

 -  Action | Adventure | Drama  -  13 June 1980 (USA)
5.2
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Ratings: 5.2/10 from 2,427 users  
Reviews: 60 user | 27 critic

In New York, the journalist Blair Maynard convinces his editor to travel to Florida to investigate the mysterious disappearance of ships in the Bermuda's Triangle area. Maynard is divorced ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Blair Maynard
...
John David Nau
Angela Punch McGregor ...
Beth
Frank Middlemass ...
Windsor
Don Henderson ...
Rollo
Dudley Sutton ...
Dr. Brazil
Colin Jeavons ...
Hizzoner
...
Wescott
Brad Sullivan ...
Stark
Jeffrey Frank ...
Justin Maynard
...
Doctor #1
Bruce McLaughlin ...
Doctor #2
James J. Casino ...
Doctor #3 (as Jimmy Casino)
Suzanne Astor ...
Mrs. Burgess
Susan Bredhoff ...
Kate
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Storyline

In New York, the journalist Blair Maynard convinces his editor to travel to Florida to investigate the mysterious disappearance of ships in the Bermuda's Triangle area. Maynard is divorced and his ex-wife sends their son Justin to stay with him while she is traveling with her boyfriend. Maynard brings Justin with him and promises to go to the Disneyland with him. However he tells Justin that they will travel to the Bermuda's Triangle but their plane crashes in an island. Maynard rents the boat of the local Dr. Brazil to fish barracuda with his son. But they are attacked by pirates and Maynard kills one of them in self-defense. They are captured and find that they are trapped in an island with pirates under the command of John David Nau. Maynard is forced to be the substitute for the husband of the widow Beth and Justin is brainwashed and converted into a pirate. Now Maynard tries to find a way out from the pirate island. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

pirate | island | boat | ship | reporter | See All (85) »

Taglines:

This summer the most terrifying thing in the water is . . . The Island See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 June 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Ilha  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$22,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$10,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of two films released in 1980 that were directed by Michael Ritchie. The other movie was the concert film Divine Madness (1980). See more »

Goofs

At the end, when Caine swings the machine gun around and kills the pirates, is an impossible act. The mount only settings in an outward arc, making it impossible to fire on the helo deck that way. See more »

Quotes

Windsor: Are you wise enough to feel privileged by what you see here? You and I are the only living men to see what you lies before you now.
Blair Maynard: A bunch of arseholes playing Long John Fucking Silver?
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Rushed film adaptation of an excruciating novel bears both Pros and Cons
6 January 2006 | by (Sundance, Utah) – See all my reviews

I made darn sure to read the novel first, before pursuing the film itself. A real Benchley fan, I was curious about this film, as "Jaws" and "The Deep" had both left great impressions on film, as as the novels were packed with constant suspense. Well, I ended up reading the novel "The Island" only knowing one thing about it: Pirates. The book itself is a real piece of literature. This may be a single opinion by myself, but I was in utter shock, and at the edge of my nerves while digesting a novel filled with compelling action and suspense. It was my smart decision to first read the book, that ultimately set me with a certain understanding, which could have been a real misunderstanding otherwise.

The story has a man, Blair Maynard (Michael Caine), who, upon working for a magazine, eyes a news story about mysterious disappearances in a particular area off the coast of Florida. Against the wishes of his employer, Blair finds a way to put the story to good use, and decides to investigate the nearby locations surrounding the events. He does, however, have one problem: He has custody of his son for the time being. Swamped with this incredible story, Blair has no choice but to take his son along the expedition. Maynard also uses this trip as "bonding time" with his son. After numerous events (most of which are unseen in the film) lead them to a small resort island, a fishing trip on the side turns into a nightmare beyond words as Blair and his son are taken hostage, and held captive by a community of rough, gritty pirates. Blair is then used as a tool for petty survival tactics, while his son is brainwashed by the menacing beasts.

The book is, as I said, very hard to digest, as Benchley endures us with sordid, if not explicit details. A lot of people claim to despise the film, with various reasons counting. Some say it suffers from a lack in character development, or a rushed plot, or anything else that has been stated. Truth, a lot of complaints are made with good reason. The film is seemingly rushed, as most moments concerning the exposition of the story are missing in the film. Benchley wrote the script, so I find it hard to believe that a finalized print as it was, could be the result of his script. Either the film ran much longer, and was cut drastically by imposition of the studio, OR, Benchley kept straight to the book, without explaining certain elements that should have been looked over. In the full picture of things, this film is both loathed and adored. I personally had no problem with it. Seeing as I read the book prior to watching the film, I can attest to the fact that it does, in fact, go directly by the book, except for some segment that obviously didn't work.This film also marks the rumor that Caine walked on the set, and snubbed a check. Knowing the character development, and specific thoughts on marked incidents, I could read into the reality, and depth to which all the characters are representing. I guess what I am saying, is that if we all read the book, then watched the film, it would certainly be more acceptable and entertaining a film. For all I know, the film could actually be seen much friendlier if edited the right way. There could easily be a totally different film sitting in a vault somewhere such as Richard Donners version of "Superman II". I doubt we will ever know about it, or if that is even an accurate speculation. Even so, the film is interesting enough, if just a little rushed in the opening. It eventually slows it's pace, and makes for a good action film. My final stand is that it deserves at least a good watch. You might like it.


22 of 29 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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