4.8/10
5
2 user

Verdict of the Sea (1932)

In this adventure, a ship's captain attempts to return some diamonds to their original owner. Unfortunately, some mutinous crewmen want the gems for themselves.

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, (as Sydney Northcote)

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Gentleman Burton
Moira Lynd ...
Paddy
Cyril McLaglen ...
Fenn
David Miller ...
Captain
Hal Walters ...
Shorty
H. Saxon-Snell ...
Myers
...
Slim
Fred Rains ...
Martin
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Storyline

In this adventure, a ship's captain attempts to return some diamonds to their original owner. Unfortunately, some mutinous crewmen want the gems for themselves.

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Genres:

Adventure | Crime

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Release Date:

14 November 1932 (UK)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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John Stuart encounters adventure on a steamer to Singapore
24 May 2016 | by See all my reviews

"Verdict of the Sea" (1932) looks like a combination silent and early-talkie movie. On occasion, it employs what seem to be a few dubbed parts filmed silently and some silent film techniques of story-telling. But for the most part, it plays like an early talkie with a fair amount of awkwardness about the way that the story is told. This is mainly in stilted acting but also the timing of shots and editing. It's out on DVD and at least looks quite good. A sample may be found on Youtube and the distributor writes "A silent-era idol whose enormous popularity was undiminished by the advent of sound, John Stuart stars as a former doctor who meets with unexpected adventure when he joins the crew of a tramp steamer in this rare early British talkie. Verdict of the Sea is featured here in a brand-new transfer from the original film elements, in its as-exhibited theatrical aspect ratio."

The movie features actual footage of a steamer headed for Singapore. The film has a recreation of an island that uses plenty of costumed extras providing a good South Sea or Philippine ambiance that involves some treachery. Stuart competes with first-mate Cyril McLaglen for the affections of the captain's daughter (Moira Lynd). McLaglen was the brother of Victor and uncle of Andrew V. McLaglen. He's well-cast in a part that calls for a rough and physical presence. Much of the action is driven by the lure of diamonds on the island. Look out also for a storm sequence involving a great deal of gushing water.

I'd rate this 4 to 5; it's not that good of a movie. Unless you are interested in early British short features for one reason or another, you need not go out of your way to catch this. I wanted to satisfy my curiosity about how these re-releases look and about how the early British cinema handled an adventure story as opposed to some stuffy drawing room affair.


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