7.4/10
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22 user 9 critic

Down to the Sea in Ships (1949)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Drama | 1949 (UK)
Whaling ship captain Bering Joy takes his grandson Jed on a whaling trip to teach him core life values while First Mate Dan Lunceford is tasked with tutoring Jed.

Director:

Henry Hathaway

Writers:

John Lee Mahin (screenplay), Sy Bartlett (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Richard Widmark ... First Mate Dan Lunceford
Lionel Barrymore ... Capt. Bering Joy
Dean Stockwell ... Jed Joy
Cecil Kellaway ... Slush Tubbs
Gene Lockhart ... Andrew L. Bush
Berry Kroeger ... Manchester
John McIntire ... Thatch
Harry Morgan ... Britton (as Henry Morgan)
Harry Davenport ... Benjamin Harris
Paul Harvey ... Capt. John Briggs
Jay C. Flippen ... Luke Sewell
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ruth Donnelly ... New Bedford Neighbor (scenes deleted)
Hubert E. Flanagan Hubert E. Flanagan ... Capt. Rumley (scenes deleted)
Connie Marshall ... New Bedford Neighbor (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

At the end of the 19th century, Massachusetts whaling ship captain Bering Joy takes his grandson Jed on a whaling expedition.The old captain wants to teach his spoiled grandson real life values such as honesty, courage, wisdom, fairness and hard work.At the same time, First Mate Dan Lunceford is entrusted with tutoring the boy in his schoolwork.A small competition and rivalry starts when both men,Captain Joy and First Mate Lunceford, strive to become young Jed's male role model.Captain Joy may have the wisdom dictated by his life's experiences but young Jed's imagination is rather captivated by Dan Lunceford's seafaring tales. Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Thar She Blows! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1949 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Capitanes del mar See more »

Filming Locations:

Seal Beach, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Lionel Barrymore's character's epitaph reads "Born on this vessel. Died on this vessel." See more »

Goofs

When asked what is the longest river in the world, Jed answers the Narragansett (not the Mississippi as noted elsewhere). This was a 19th century name for a complex of small rivers (now called the Blackstone, Seekonk, and Providence rivers) that empty into Narragansett Bay. The river system is located in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Since Jed is from New Bedford, he would have been familiar with this river system and bay. See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: NEW BEDFORD 1887 See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Doctor and the Girl (1949) See more »

Soundtracks

Rolling Home
(uncredited)
Traditional
Arranged by Cyril J. Mockridge and Edward B. Powell
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Another Great Boy vs the Sea Classic
20 April 2005 | by breckswordzSee all my reviews

This film reminds me of another great Lionel Barrymore classic, "Captains Courageous-" another "boy comes of age on the sea" film. If you enjoyed this one, you'll like that one, too. Leonard Maltin gives this film three stars and "Captains" four, but I prefer this one, probably because I had a hard time getting past Spencer Tracy's laughable attempt at a Portuguese accent in "Captains."

Although I'm not a sailor, this film seems pretty authentic, as though they paid attention to their technical adviser. Less Hollywood than you might expect from a 1949 film.

A previous reviewer described the ships in this film as Bluenose Schooners; actually, all the vessels in "Down to the Sea" are square-rigged whaling ships In my opinion, few things made by Man are as magnificent as a square-rigger under full sail.


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