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The Pirates of Blood River (1962)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Drama | August 1962 (USA)
A group of ruthless pirates attack a seventeenth century Huguenot settlement on the Isle of Devon in search of treasure and will stop at nothing to obtain it.

Director:

John Gilling

Writers:

John Hunter (screenplay), John Gilling (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Kerwin Mathews ... Jonathon Standing
Glenn Corbett ... Henry
Christopher Lee ... Capt. LaRoche
Peter Arne ... Hench - a Pirate
Marla Landi ... Bess Standing
Oliver Reed ... Brocaire - a Pirate
Andrew Keir ... Jason Standing
Michael Ripper ... Mack - a Pirate
David Lodge ... Smith
Dennis Waterman ... Timothy Blackthorne
Jack Stewart Jack Stewart ... Godfrey Mason
Lorraine Clewes Lorraine Clewes ... Martha Blackthorne
Jerold Wells ... Penal Colony Master
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Storyline

In a village of Huguenot refugees, Jonathon Standing is exiled by his father to a nearby penal colony for his improper relationship with a married woman. This penal colony is then invaded by pirates who force Jonathan to lead them back to his village, convinced that it contains a great treasure. Written by dinky-4 of Minneapolis

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Ransacking a lost tropic island... for a fabulous idol of gold!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

August 1962 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Die Piraten am Todesfluss See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

Color (photographed in) (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Sammy Davis Jr. visited the set during shooting. See more »

Goofs

When one of the pirates stomps with his foot at the bottom of the pit they're digging, the sound it makes is clearly that of hollow wood, yet he says that they have reached the bottom and there is nothing but rock (1:03:17). See more »

Quotes

Captain LaRoche: If I kill, it is to achieve a purpose, not for the sake of killing.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: At the end of the seventeenth century, men, women and children voyaged far from their mother country, seeking some haven from persecution.

They were known as the Huguenots. They found their haven and called it the Isle of Devon, and gave thanks to God for their deliverance.

But in years to come, the just laws of the Colony began to yield to greed and tyranny.

Happiness became an echo of the past. Freedom-just a memory. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hammer: The Studio That Dripped Blood! (1987) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Dude, where's our ship?
13 August 2017 | by Hey_SwedenSee all my reviews

Good, colorful period adventure from Hammer Studios is also a curiosity - a landlocked pirate movie! The high seas are nowhere in sight in a tale set on the Isle of Devon in the late 17th century. People known as "Huguenots" have fled persecution, and set up a peaceable community. Young Jonathon Standing (Kerwin Mathews), found guilty of adultery and sentenced to 15 years in a nearby penal colony, ultimately falls into the clutches of a pirate gang who are determined - nay, hellbent - on discovering whatever treasures this island may hold.

"The Pirates of Blood River" is nothing great, but it thoroughly entertains the viewer for a well paced 87 minutes. It's got plenty of effective ingredients: action set pieces, rousing orchestral music (by Gary Hughes), wonderful widescreen photography, and a reasonably simple plot (screenplay by John Hunter and director John Gilling, based on a story by Jimmy Sangster). Said plot includes a theme of religious fervor, and how some people, like Jonathons' father Jason (Andrew Keir), allow this to completely dictate how they live their lives.

Jonathon is no innocent - he WAS guilty, after all - but he's still quite a likable chap, and one may admire him for attempting to take a stand. The villains are appropriately despicable, with the great Sir Christopher Lee taking center stage as a French accented pirate leader named LaRoche. Among his crew are Mr. Hench (Peter Arne), Brocaire (Oliver Reed), and Mack (Michael Ripper). This excellent cast helps to add life to the familiar but agreeable proceedings. (That's Desmond "Q" Llewelyn in the small role of Tom Blackthorne.)

The action is well executed, although the final battle is a little anticlimactic because there was a sequence earlier in the picture that was more intense. There's one show stopping sword fight where Arne and Reed duel (while blindfolded) over a woman. And there's a mild bit of gore, although scenes involving piranha attacks involve little more than splashing water and a bit of blood.

Fun stuff, for Hammer fans and lovers of pirate cinema.

Seven out of 10.


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