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Ship of Fools (1965)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance, War | October 1965 (Austria)
Trailer
3:32 | Trailer
A varied group of passengers boarding a ship bound for pre-WWII Germany represents a microcosm of early 1930s society.

Director:

Stanley Kramer

Writers:

Katherine Anne Porter (novel), Abby Mann (screenplay)
Reviews
Won 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Vivien Leigh ... Mary Treadwell
Simone Signoret ... La Condesa
José Ferrer ... Siegfried Rieber (as Jose Ferrer)
Lee Marvin ... Tenny
Oskar Werner ... Dr. Schumann
Elizabeth Ashley ... Jenny
George Segal ... David
José Greco ... Pepe (as Jose Greco)
Michael Dunn ... Glocken
Charles Korvin ... Capt. Thiele
Heinz Rühmann ... Lowenthal (as Heinz Ruehmann)
Lilia Skala ... Frau Hutten
BarBara Luna ... Amparo (as Barbara Luna)
Christiane Schmidtmer ... Lizzi
Alf Kjellin ... Freytag
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Stars: Anthony Quinn, Ann-Margret, Gary Lockwood
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Storyline

1933: An ocean liner belonging to a second-rate German company is making a twenty-six day voyage from Veracruz, Mexico to Bremerhaven, Germany. Along the way it will stop in Cuba to pick up a large group of Spanish farm laborers who are being shipped home and who will be housed like cattle in steerage. There it will also pick up La Condesa, a Spanish countess. It will stop in Tenerife, where the farm workers will disembark and where La Condesa will be sent to a German-run prison for her "traitorous" activities in Cuba. This voyage will be the last of three for the ship's doctor, Willi Schumann, who has a serious heart ailment and who thought he could find some meaning to his life through this job. Willi and La Condesa fall in love, with the ship's Captain Thiele, who is Willi's closest friend on board, believing the drug-addicted La Condesa is only using him to get her fixes. Willi and La Condesa have to figure out if there is a future for them after the voyage, as Willi's life also ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

german | ship | american | love | germany | See All (227) »

Taglines:

EXPLORER, MISTRESS, VAGRANT, LOAFER, ARTIST, TRAMP ... THEY ARE ALL AT THE CAPTAIN'S TABLE! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The homoerotic nuance between Captain Thiele (Charles Korvin) and ship's doctor Walter Schumann (Oskar Werner) is introduced in the first scene and reinforced in the way Thiele meaningfully eyes Schumann throughout the voyage, indicating that the captain's feelings are not returned by Schumann. See more »

Goofs

As the passengers disembark at the end, Johann pauses on the steps to watch Amparo walk by, when Tenny appears walking down the steps behind Johann. Immediately the film cuts to a shot of the gangplank above, where Tenny is seen just leaving the ship. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Glocken: [walks up to the ship's railing] My name is Karl Glocken, and this is a ship of fools. I'm a fool, and you'll meet more fools as we go along. This tub is packed with them: emancipated ladies, ball players, lovers, dog lovers, ladies of joy, tolerant Jews, dwarfs - all kinds. And who knows, if you look closely enough, you may even find yourself on board.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Mouth 3 (2018) See more »

Soundtracks

Irgendwie, irgendwo, irgendwann
Music by Ernest Gold
Lyrics by Jack Lloyd
See more »

User Reviews

 
An Imperfect Gem
2 December 2007 | by littlemartinarocenaSee all my reviews

A grim long voyage with an earnest script by the remarkable Abby Mann and a respectful Stanley Kramer at the helm. Assorted desperate characters makes the sailing a gripping one. When the extraordinary Simone Signoret, Oskar Werner and Vivien Leigh are on, we're there with them one hundred per cent. Simone Signoret's addicted Countess and Vivien Leigh's bitter and disillusioned middle age Southern woman touch and dominate the highest, most powerful moments. Their stories have an immediate resonance and their faces, wonderful, beautiful faces, carry a truth that is as pungent as it is undeniable. Painful yes, very painful but, as it happens with the best kind of drama, entertaining, compelling, cinematic. Jose Ferrer's German bore, George Segal and Elizabeth Ashley and even the wonderful Michael Dunn will make you sea sick at times but I will recommend it nonetheless just to admire and enjoy Vivien Leigh's Charleston or Simone Signoret looking at Oskar Werner with a mixture of love, lust, compassion and need. For collectors of imperfect gems.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German | Spanish

Release Date:

October 1965 (Austria) See more »

Also Known As:

Ship of Fools See more »

Filming Locations:

Hollywood, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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