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The Bounty (1984)

 -  Action | Adventure | Drama  -  4 May 1984 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 15,394 users  
Reviews: 87 user | 22 critic

The familiar story of Lieutenant Bligh, whose cruelty leads to a mutiny on his ship. This version follows both the efforts of Fletcher Christian to get his men beyond the reach of British ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
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Captain Greetham
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William Cole
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Wi Kuki Kaa ...
King Tynah
Tevaite Vernette ...
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...
David Nelson
Malcolm Terris ...
Dr. John Huggan
Simon Adams ...
...
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Storyline

The familiar story of Lieutenant Bligh, whose cruelty leads to a mutiny on his ship. This version follows both the efforts of Fletcher Christian to get his men beyond the reach of British retribution, and the epic voyage of Lieutenant Bligh to get his loyalists safely to East Timor in a tiny lifeboat. Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They were friends through hell. They became enemies in Paradise. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

4 May 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Bounty  »

Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$8,600,000 (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

Bligh's later career was peppered with further mutinies and complaints about his "oppressive attitude". His tyrannical nature later sparked the Rum Rebellion in New South Wales in 1808, which led to his being forcibly deported. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of a meal, the officers toast the King, but do so while sitting. British serving officers always stood while toasting the monarch, even though only in the captain's cabin of a large ship would there be enough headroom to stand upright. When William IV, a naval officer since he was about 13, became King in 1830, he allowed serving officers to toast him while sitting, but this was more than 30 years too late for the officers of the Bounty. See more »

Quotes

Christian: William, about your decision to go around the Horn.
Bligh: "William"? Not "Sir", not "Captain"; "William"?
Christian: I don't think the men will have it.
Bligh: Oh, the men won't have it. Are they in charge of the Bounty?
Christian: They might be if you insist.
Bligh: Again, would you repeat that please. "The men might be in charge." What are you threatening me with?
Christian: It's not a threat, it's a warning.
Bligh: [sarcastically] Oh, there are rumblings, are there?
Christian: No, there is fear.
Bligh: Around the Horn is the easiest way, the better way, and that is how...
[...]
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
The best history of the mutiny so far
12 August 2005 | by (North Carolina, USA) – See all my reviews

I'm only giving this film 8 stars, because as good as it is "the Bounty" still leaves some undeserved blots on the reputation of a great and courageous man. A bit more truth and this film would get a TEN from me.

There have been many film treatments of this amazing story, but only "The Bounty" gets it even halfway right. The 1935 Lawton/Gable "Mutiny on the Bounty" is 49% balderdash and 51% falsehood. The Trevor Howard/Marlon Bando stinker is even less factual. "The Bounty", however is pretty good history in many places, especially Bligh's court-martial and the actual mutiny sequence, which is almost word-for-word what Bligh recorded in his own writings on the matter. The ship itself is correctly represented, right down to the figurehead – a woman in a blue riding habit, which makes no sense until one realizes that HMAV Bounty was originally a merchant ship called the Bethia.

The movie does take liberties with history. Some characters are composites and some important figures are absent entirely. In the plot Bligh seeks out Christian to be his second officer. In reality Christian was a friend of Bligh's wife's family, and it was he who sought a posting on Bounty; Bligh didn't solicit his participation. In fact Bligh jiggered the ship's roster to make room for Christian.

But the worst departure from fact is the business about Cape Horn and circumnavigation. The movie wants us to believe that Bligh chose the route for his own glory. Not true. Bligh complained to the Admiralty about the chosen course before they set sail from England, thinking it too dangerous for such a small vessel. But he was overruled. The return trip was never intended to go by way of Cape Horn. The cargo was breadfruit seedlings, a tropical plant that can't endure the kind of temperatures encountered in the Drake Passage or the Straits of Magellan. Bligh was forbidden to return via this route. Even if he wanted to such a course of action would have ruined his career. Also the mutiny occurred near Tofua, about 1300 miles west of Tahiti, the wrong direction to sail if you're bound for Cape Horn.

Bligh was a man and a professional. Christian was a silly, overwrought upper class schoolboy who committed a vile crime over puppy love of a Polynesian girl. He got away with attempted mass murder, and 200 years later people still praise him. Bligh was a true hero who hasn't got justice yet.


13 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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