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Hornblower: Duty (2003)

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Admiral Pellew interrupts Hornblower's wedding reception and tasks him to locate a British ship which has disappeared off the French coast, where Napoleon's troops are engaged in covert activities.



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Title: Hornblower: Duty (TV Movie 2003)

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Nominated for 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mrs. Mason
David Birkin ...
Camilla Power ...


Now married to Maria, Horatio Hornblower is soon sent by Admiral Pellew in search of the sloop Grasshopper captained by their old friend, Bracegirdle. The ship had been patrolling a stretch of French coast but had not sent in a report for over two weeks. During a raging storm they take aboard two passengers, an American woman and her French speaking Swiss husband. They are not what they pretend to be. Horatio and his men also encounter Wolfe, the Irish rebel turned traitor and now fighting France. They also realize exactly what Wolfe's plan is when they see three French frigates riding high in the water near his encampment. At home, Horatio is getting used to marriage and having to share his life with someone. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

french | ship | duty | british | water | See All (57) »


Adventure | Drama | War


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Release Date:

3 December 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hornblower - L'arte del comando  »

Filming Locations:


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Did You Know?


The blue and white print gown worn by Julia Sawalha (Maria) to church is the same costume worn by a guest at the Easter Ball in Wives and Daughters (1999). See more »


After the discovery of the canons in the barn, Hornblower and his companion are walking in a field with a period cottage on his right. Attached to the chimney is a TV aerial. See more »


Mrs. Mason: Horatio. You think you're just the Hotspur's captain, you think only of your hundred crew. But you're also a husband now. Is it too much that you might think of one wife? That you might think of her as your duty too?
See more »


Follows Horatio Hornblower: Retribution (2001) See more »


Yankee Doodle
Performed by Sean Gilder
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User Reviews

Great series
13 December 2014 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

A great series, based on the books by CS Forester.

The adventures of Horatio Hornblower, an officer in the Royal Navy at the start of the 19th century. The movies follow his rise up the ranks.

Very realistic in its actions, commands, uniforms, ships etc. Some great action and human drama.

Special effects are good, except for the explosions. Those seem very cheap and unrealistic.

The other area that seems unrealistic is Hornblower's home life. The relationship with Maria seems very clumsy and unnatural.

Great performance by Ioan Gruffudd in the lead role. This is surpassed by Robert Lindsay as Admiral Pellew. He provides the perfect mix of authority, gravitas, compassion and father-like doting.

Good support from Paul McGann as Lt Bush, Paul Copley as Matthews and Sean Gilder as Styles.

The biggest pity is that this movie is the last one they made, when there are several books left.

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