During the Rif War in Morocco, the French Foreign Legion's outpost of Tarfa is threatened by Khalif Hussein's tribes but Sergeant Mike Kincaid devises a plan of survival until the arrival of French reinforcements.
During the 1700s, pirate Captain Vallo seizes a British warship and gets involved in various money-making schemes involving Caribbean rebels led by El Libre, British envoy Baron Jose Gruda, and a beautiful courtesan named Consuelo.
In 1870, Yankee sea captain O'Keefe finds himself stranded after a mutiny on the Micronesian island of Yap, where the financial potential of copra (dried cocoanut) excites him. But a German company already has a monopoly...and very low production because hard work is alien to dwellers in paradise. On a later voyage, between affairs with island maidens, O'Keefe struggles to find the key to the wealth of Yap. But before he can carve out the empire of his dreams, he must also contend with assorted villains...Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
When O'Keefe's mutinous crew throws him overboard at the beginning, he climbs into the lifeboat being towed by his ship. A crewman is then shown cutting the tow line, but when the camera cuts back to O'Keefe in the boat, the line is still taut and leading up to the ship. Only later is the severed line shown floating slack in the water. See more »
The last of Burt Lancaster's adventurous star vehicles is easily the weakest: bland, dreary and unmemorable yet contriving to be a colorful and pleasant diversion nevertheless; apparently, he plays an actual larger-than-life adventurer who became the ruler of a Fijian island. Andre' Morell and Abraham Sofaer round up a rather unremarkable cast as a German trading agent and the native (and benign for once) witch doctor.
The film has an excessive quota of local color via a succession of tedious native ceremonies but only a handful of the expected action sequences although, what little there is, is adequately enough staged (including a hand-to-hand combat between Lancaster and a rebellious native chieftain who eventually comes to accept O'Keefe as his sovereign). An unusual element to the narrative which is, however, never brought to fruition is the native's reverence for a local stone they call "Fei". Needless to say, the strapping (and frequently bare-chested) Lancaster turns the girls' heads wherever he goes in particular that of an Afro-sporting native girl and his future wife, Asian Joan Rice.
The film was released on DVD by Warners as part of a rather undistinguished "Burt Lancaster Signature Collection" but I still intend to get my hands on the rest of them in the future; for the record, I already have the best of this bunch i.e. Jacques Tourneur's THE FLAME AND THE ARROW (1950).
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