The year is 1886, when New England's fishing harbours are the scene for a "creature of unknown origin" destroying ships at sea. It is the job of Professor Pierre Aronnax, a marine expert, ... See full summary »
Captain Nemo goes even deeper into insanity in this mesmerizing fantasy tale. Once again at the helm of his fearsome, wildly advanced vessel, the nautical madman endeavors to turn the world above the waves upside down.
Henry Jekyll is a troubled man. His wife died of pneumonia. He wants his sister-in-law, but her father forbids any contact. And his experiments into the dual nature of man have yielded a ... See full summary »
Former British secret agent Harry Palmer now runs a Private Investigation company in Russia. He gets a job to locate and recover a consignment of stolen Plutonium, and with the help of ... See full summary »
Haskell (Michael Caine) is assigned a job by his boss, the aristocratic Landon-Higgins (James Fox), to highjack a high security van in broad daylight while it's in the shadow run (out of ... See full summary »
The year is 1886, when New England's fishing harbours are the scene for a "creature of unknown origin" destroying ships at sea. It is the job of Professor Pierre Aronnax, a marine expert, and Ned Land, the iron willed sailor, to learn the truth of the "monster" roaming the seas. The great novelist, Jules Verne, described this perilous journey to the darkest depths of the sea with Captain Nemo aboard the Nautilus. Written by
Edwin van Oorschot <email@example.com>
I have nothing against fun and fantasy. But this piece has so little to do with Verne's story that I wonder why the writers didn't just dispense with their token analogies to it and create new characters!
Yes, Caine's performance is "intense", but also utterly meaningless: his Nemo has none of the subtlety, the pensiveness, the drivenness of James Mason's; the two can no more be compared than Kevin Costner's Robin Hood can be compared to Errol Flynn's, or Marlon Brando's performance as Bligh in Mutiny on the Bounty to Charles Laughton's. The ballyhooed "intensity" of Caine's portrayal resolves itself into very little more than hypermanic nuttiness. (Maybe Caine was trying so hard to avoid being compared to Mason that he couldn't figure any other way to do the role than to toss all subtlety overboard?)
The character of Attucks, of course, is the "man of action" that the plot needs, thus totally eclipsing Ned Land and making the latter's presence gratuitous. So if the writers were so obsessed with political correctness that they needed to add a nonwhite character, why in the world not just make Ned himself nonwhite?
And haven't we had enough of upstarts trying to improve on Verne by adding a love interest? Apparently not: this version gives Nemo a daughter, who sails with him on the Nautilus and with whom Aronnax (here depicted as a young sexpot) has an affair.
Of course, the fact that this Nautilus has a multi-ethnic crew (an idea hinted at, but not developed by, Verne himself) is a nice touch, but one that doesn't take us very far because this version tells us so little about Nemo's and the crew's background. In conclusion, a lot of fine acting talent is wasted on this philosophically confused piece of work.
Verne has suffered a bewildering number of bad adaptations, but this is ridiculous.
10 of 15 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?