In 1787, British ship Bounty leaves Portsmouth to bring a cargo of bread-fruit from Tahiti but the savage on-board conditions imposed by Captain Bligh trigger a mutiny led by officer Fletcher Christian.
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The professional mercenary Sir William Walker instigates a slave revolt on the Caribbean island of Queimada in order to help improve the British sugar trade. Years later he is sent again to... See full summary »
The Bounty leaves Portsmouth in 1787. Its destination: to sail to Tahiti and load bread-fruit. Captain Bligh will do anything to get there as fast as possible, using any means to keep up a strict discipline. When they arrive at Tahiti, it is like a paradise for the crew, something completely different than the living hell aboard the ship. On the way back to England, officer Fletcher Christian becomes the leader of a mutiny.Written by
In reality, Captain Bligh was not a "flogging Captain". The ship's log shows that Bligh flogged less, not more, than most other Captains. But he had an acid tongue, believed he was always right, and did not hesitate to berate his officers in front of the men, destroying their authority. This was the real cause of the mutiny. See more »
It starts in Portsmouth Harbour on 23rd December yet trees in the background are in full leaf plus it is very sunny and looks warm, very unusual for England just before Christmas. See more »
There's no chance for people like us to go back to England, give Bligh a bad name and walk free men ourselves. And anyone who thinks otherwise hasn't got the sense that God gave geese.
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A film filled to the brim with colour and spectacle
As far as I can recall, 1962's Mutiny on the Bounty was one of the many matinee-films shown for many years during Christmas that I used to watch lazily as a kid while doing other things at the same time. I do not think I ever watched the whole thing from beginning to end. Consequently, I never found it too fascinating.
When I many years later decided to buy it on VHS and watch it concentratedly, I fell in love with it immediately. I have always been a fan of large-scale films like Ben Hur, Doctor Zhivago and Lawrence of Arabia and Mutiny is definitely a "large-scale" film. Not only boasting a wide variety of colourful locations, from breathtaking, sun-drenched sea vistas to exotic beachscapes on Tahiti, it also includes some great actors, such as Marlon Brando, Richard Harris and Trevor Howard as the despicable captain Bligh. Contributing to the "large-scale" feel is Bronislau Kaper's lush and magic music score, featuring haunting chorus statements of the main theme, interestingly entitled "Follow me". The music was so lovely that I had to try out the theme on the piano once I finished watching the film.
I suppose most readers of this post are already familiar with the basic plotline, so I will not have to go through that.
I find that the film contains quite a lot of nice dialogue that sticks in your memory. But it is above all the growing conflict aboard the ship that is the major interesting theme of the film. Just to see how the conflict between Bligh and Christian builds step by step, from more or less nothing to mutiny. Even though it is unpleasant, it is a delight to follow. In any case, it had me glued to the screen.
I cannot say whether the events are portrayed authentically as they happened historically or not, but to me that is of minor interest. The film comes out magnificent all the same and appear to me to be quite realistic.
Another thing about the film that appealed to me is that it is so beautiful. Not only are the locations beautiful, but a lot of the actors, their contemporary clothing, not to mention the Tahitian beauties, are simply eye-catching. The Bounty, the ship itself, is also quite something else. A lot of the film's beauty, I believe, also has to do with good photography thoughout. The film lends itself incredibly well to widescreen-viewing.
I would heartily recommend this film to any fan of cinema. It is a film filled to the brim with colour and spectacle with marvelous actors and a catching and disturbing story of power abuse and the British Empire in its heyday. The only disturbing thing at the moment of writing, is that it still has not been released on DVD. But when it is, I sincerely hope it comes in a deservedly magnificent picture- and sound-transfer including a mountain of extras. I simply cannot wait.
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