Tom Merriam signs on the ship Altair as third officer under Captain Stone. At first things look good, Stone sees Merriam as a younger version of himself and Merriam sees Stone as the first ...
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Tom Merriam signs on the ship Altair as third officer under Captain Stone. At first things look good, Stone sees Merriam as a younger version of himself and Merriam sees Stone as the first adult to ever treat him as a friend. But after a couple strange deaths of crew members, Merriam begins to think Stone is a psychopathic madman obsessed with authority. He tries to tell others, but no one believes him, and it only makes Stone angry..Written by
Ken Yousten <email@example.com>
Lawrence Tierney, as a complaining sailor, goes up against Richard Dix, who plays the villainous ship captain. Years later, Tierney's brother, Scott Brady, would have to deal with an antagonist biker played by Dix's son, Robert Dix, in Satan's Sadists. See more »
In a close-up of the porthole in Tertius' cabin, wires to move the detached lid are visible. See more »
Perhaps not as mesmerizing as "Cat People" or as disturbing as "The Body Snatcher", but this still definitely is a genuinely creepy golden oldie horror gem like only the great Val Lewton could produce them back in the 1940's. This dark and atmospheric chiller takes us aboard a giant ship in order to examine the mysterious deaths of several crew members. They all seem like unfortunate accidents, but pretty soon the young and ambitious officer Tom Merriam suspects that Captain Will Stone abuses his power in order to get rid of rebellious personnel. The film is terrifically cut in half when the ship sets ashore and Merriam prosecutes the influential and highly respected captain. From then on, the nemesis between the two is frighteningly illustrated and a drama on-board the ship seems inevitable. Richard Dix is outstanding as the tormented Captain Will Stone! He looks naturally eerie and definitely not man to argue with. The black and white photography is stunning and the constantly sung sailor-song will remain stuck in your head, even long after you finished watching the movie. The Val Lewton horror of course isn't very explicit (considering the time and budget) but this movie does contain at least one truly unsettling sequence; when a giant chain crushes a crew member. My advise is to watch this classic as soon as you can, if it were only for the ultra-eerie mute in the supportive cast!
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