When Ernest Borgnine is piloting his tug and approaching the Vega, he signals the Vega with three short blasts on the horn. According to US Coast Guard Navigation Rule 34, three short blasts on the horn indicates "I am operating astern propulsion" (backing up). He is obviously going forward and should have sounded 1 short blast to indicate "I intend to leave you on my port side", 2 short blasts to indicate "I intend to leave you on my starboard side" or the danger signal, which is 5 short blasts, if the other vessel was not following the navigation rules. See more »
If you ever doubted that the tastes of children are less demanding than those of us adults then all you need to do to convince yourself is watch a few of the profusion of kiddie flicks that litter Sky movie channels' daytime schedules - assuming, of course, that what the kiddies receive is what they actually want, and that they're not conditioned into accepting sloppy efforts like this. The fact that a movie is aimed at the pre-teen set should be no excuse for poor acting (and timing), sloppy editing, and horrendously choreographed swordfight sequences (although they, at least, make you appreciate how difficult the good ones must be to stage).
192-year-old Ernest Borgnine receives top-billing, probably because he is the only recognisable actor in the entire picture, but he meets a watery end in the first 15 minutes, abandoning us to the dubious talents of the teenage leads (canny leading 'man', feisty leading lady, and slightly geeky best friend), and an excitable old boy who acts as if he's vocalising for a Warner Brother's cartoon of the 40s. To be fair, the male lead is quite likeable, but he lacks the necessary charisma to carry the film (I can't see any kid relating to this guy), but the girl (or, to be kind, her character) is just irritating, and only Randall Godwin, as the evil Doc Biehler, comes close to passing muster, although he's far too puny to be an intimidating presence.
Sadly enough, there's the seed of a good children's story cocooned within the sluggish pace and dearth of action, it's just a shame that writer Terry Caszatt lacks the necessary experience to give it life and avoid leaving so many things unexplained
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