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The Adventures of Martin Eden (1942)

Author writes about his experiences sailing at sea, struggles to get his work published.

Director:

Sidney Salkow

Writers:

Jack London (novel), W.L. River (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview:
Glenn Ford ... Martin Eden
Claire Trevor ... Connie Dawson
Evelyn Keyes ... Ruth Morley
Stuart Erwin ... Joe Dawson
Dickie Moore ... Johnny
Ian MacDonald ... 'Butch' Raglan
Frank Conroy ... Carl Brissenden
Rafaela Ottiano ... Marie Sylva
Pierre Watkin ... Amos Morley
Regina Wallace Regina Wallace ... Mrs. Morley
Robert J. McDonald Robert J. McDonald ... Trial Judge
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Storyline

Martin Eden (Glenn Ford) is a sailor whose brutal treatment at the hands of the Bligh-like skipper, Captain "Butch" Raglan (Ian MacDonald), of the "hellship" on which he is serving prompts him to bring to pubic attention , through the publication of his memoirs, the seaman's unenviable lot. The long-coming but eventual publication of the harrowing document results not only in bringing the brutal captain to justice, but also the freeing of a fellow sailor, Joe Dawson (Stuart Erwin), wrongly accused of mutiny. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

BIG AS LIFE! MIGHTY AS THE SEA! (re-release-poster-all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 February 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

High Seas See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)| Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film received its New York City television premiere Wednesday 9 June 1948 on WPIX (Channel 11); in Lowell MA (serving the Boston Area), it first aired Saturday 18 September 1948 on WBZ (Channel 4), in Detroit Sunday 31 October 1948 on WJBK (Channel 2), in St. Louis Saturday 20 November 1948 on KSD (Channel 5), in Atlanta Tuesday 28 December 1948 on WSB (Channel 8), in San Francisco Saturday 12 February 1949 on freshly launched KPIX (Channel 5), in Cincinnati Saturday 19 February 1949 on WLW-T (Channel 4), in Dayton Monday 21 March 1949 on WLW-D (Channel 5), in Salt Lake City Sunday 27 November 1949 on KDYL (Channel 4), in Philadelphia Tuesday 6 December 1949 on WCAU Channel 10), and in Los Angeles Sunday 26 February 1950 on KTLA (Channel 5). See more »

Quotes

Martin Eden: Your Honor, I've been handed this same magoo for thirteen days. You let Captain Butch Raglan come in here and tell a pack of lies that is fiction; he goes back to sea like a hero. I got the truth here. Why don't you make Old Man Morley come down here and listen to what goes on aboard his stinking death wagons? Why are you all so afraid of the truth?
The judge: One more word, young man and I'll have to hold you in contempt of court.
Martin Eden: Alright, Your Honor. You're the skipper here. But I'll make you listen ...
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Crazy Credits

The opening credits are displayed on a series of front covers of the "San Francisco Express" newspaper. See more »

Connections

Version of Martin Eden (1914) See more »

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User Reviews

A Ford Showcase
28 May 2012 | by dougdoepkeSee all my reviews

Glenn Ford gives a rousing performance as the title character. This was still early in his career, before the actor settled into his more familiar low-key film persona. But his spirit here is well placed since Eden has to struggle against social forces far stronger than he. Based on Jack London's autobiography, the screenplay shows how narrow the literary parameters were in London's day. Fiction served mainly as escapism for the leisure class and was a long way from the kind of raw reality Eden sought to portray. Naturally, the moneyed class didn't want to read about how tough life was for the industrial workingman. Thus, more familiar types of literary realism, such as London-Eden's, were generally suppressed. This is an important part of the screenplay and offers a glimpse of the barrier certain kinds of authors faced in getting published.

The movie's central crux, however, is Eden's having to choose between staying with his working class roots, symbolized by Connie (Trevor), or ascending to the moneyed class with Ruth (Keyes). On a more abstract plane, it's also a contest between Truth with a capital T, on one side, and social position, on the other. Thus, it's also a movie of conflicting ideals.

Basically, the movie starts fast, sags somewhat in the middle, and rev's-up for the climax. In fact, the first part, aboard ship, amounts to a hard act to follow. Frankly, I could have done without some of the ritual brawling with Raglan (MacDonald), which seems added mainly for action's sake. Nonetheless, it's a revealing little film with an energetic turn from headliner Ford and a good glimpse of the literary world, circa 1900.


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