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The Buccaneer (1958)

Approved | | Adventure, Drama, History | 1 December 1958 (USA)
During the war of 1812, Louisiana buccaneer Jean Lafitte assists the Americans in defending New Orleans against the attacking British war fleet.

Director:

Anthony Quinn

Writers:

Harold Lamb, Jesse Lasky Jr. (as Jesse L. Lasky Jr.) | 5 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Yul Brynner ... Jean Lafitte
Claire Bloom ... Bonnie Brown
Charles Boyer ... Dominique You
Inger Stevens ... Annette Claiborne
Henry Hull ... Ezra Peavey
E.G. Marshall ... Gov. William Claiborne
Charlton Heston ... Gen. Andrew Jackson
Lorne Greene ... Mercier
Ted de Corsia ... Capt. Rumbo
Douglass Dumbrille ... Collector of the Port
Robert F. Simon ... Capt. Brown
Sir Lancelot Sir Lancelot ... Scipio
Fran Jeffries ... Cariba - Mawbee Girl
John Dierkes ... Deacon
Ken Miller Ken Miller ... Young Sentry
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Storyline

During the War of 1812 against the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland: General Andrew Jackson has only 1,200 men left to defend New Orleans when he learns that a British fleet will arrive with 60 ships and 16,000 men to take the city. In this situation an island near the city becomes strategically important to both parties, but it's inhabited by the last big buccaneer: Jean Lafitte. Although Lafitte never attacks American ships, the governor hates him for selling merchandise without taxes - and is loved by the citizens for the same reason. When the big fight gets nearer, Lafitte is drawn between the fronts. His heart belongs to America, but his people urge him to join the party that's more likely to win. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Piercing Drama of La Fitte - Man or Devil ? See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 December 1958 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A kalóz See more »

Filming Locations:

New Iberia, Louisiana, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There was a "Dominic Yu" in Lafitte's band of pirates, but modern research suggests "Yu" was actually an alias for Alexandre Lafitte, Jean's older brother, from whom he learned the buccaneer's trade. See more »

Goofs

Andrew Jackson appears as he looked at the time of his Presidency: 62 years of age and white haired, just as on the twenty dollar bill. At the time of the Battle of New Orleans he was not yet 48 y/o, and he still had his original red hair. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Dominique You: When a man loses everything else, he still has the sea. This deck is the only country we have.
Bonnie Brown: This is all the country I want.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Anthony Quinn, in his only outing as film director, had his cut of the picture received warmly by preview audiences, but his executive producer/father-in-law Cecil B. DeMille substantially re-edited the movie anyway. Quinn's version has not been seen since. See more »

Connections

Features For Whom the Bell Tolls (1943) See more »

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User Reviews

Epic is Historically Inaccurate,Dramatically Uneven
20 December 2000 | by hans101067See all my reviews

I first saw this film when it came out in the late 50s,and watched it every time it came on tv for decades afterward.It might say something about my tastes,because I thought it was a rousingly good adventure story.I still feel that way-for a pirate and battle film,it's first-rate.Where,then are my criticisms?First;a.)The battle of New Orleans was fought about 3 weeks after a peace treaty had been signed,and was,technically,irrelevant;b.)Unlike what they imply in the film,the British and the American forces were evenly matched-when the citizens of New Orleans and the pirates joined Jackson,the British were out-numbered;c.)The reason Laffite was not appreciated by the American government was not the PIRACY,per se,(they had legal commissions as privateers issued by Simon Bolivar)but because of the smuggling;d.)Laffitte had to leave,not because of the actions of a renegade captain under his command,but because he had returned to smuggling after he had received a presidential pardon;e.)Dominique,who was Laffite's much older brother,was an earthy,warm-hearted man who stayed behind and became a political hack under the Americans.Boyer is giving a reprise of an earlier portrayal on Napoleon;.I get the feeling that,with the big production,the large number of stars and well-known character actors who were doing supporting parts,the elaborate sets and props,and routines,they were trying to duplicate the success and magnitude of "The Ten Commandments"several years earlier.The big scenes-the pirate captains' conference;the pirate market;the taking of the"Corinthian"and the scenes at Barataria are well-done.(One bogus sequence,however-when Laffite challenges the pirate captains to kill Miggs before they can divy up the gold,and they back down-give me a break.Given the opportunity to get the loot-they would have lined up to slit the kid's throat.)The Battle of New Orleans is exteremly well-handled.Numerous viginettes of men preparing a variety of activities leading into the final fight-adds up to an impressive fourth act.And the love scenes do drag.This is not what De Mille was known for.So,enjoy this film on it's own merits,and realize that nothing is ever perfect.


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