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 story of Lieutenant Bligh, whose cruelty leads to a mutiny on his ship. Follows both the efforts of Fletcher Christian to get his men beyond the reach of British retribution and the epic voyage of Lieutenant Bligh to get his loyalists safely to East Timor in a tiny lifeboat.Written by
Sir Anthony Hopkins, who had battled with alcoholism until becoming abstinent in 1975, was worried about Mel Gibson's heavy drinking, saying, "Mel is a wonderful, wonderful fellow with a marvelous future. He's already something of a superstar, but he's in danger of blowing it, unless he takes hold of himself." Gibson, who likewise self-identified as an alcoholic, agreed with this concern, and added his admiration for the Welsh actor: "He was terrific. He was good to work with, because he was open, and he was willing to give. He's a moral man, and you could see this. I think we had the same attitudes." See more »
Lieutenant Bligh states the mission of the Bounty was to bring Grapefruit from Tahiti in 1789. Grapefruit was first documented in 1750 by a Welshman, Rev. Griffith Hughes, who described specimens from Barbados in The Natural History of Barbados. By 1696, the fruit was being cultivated in Barbados and Jamaica. There would be no need for the Bounty to transport Grapefruit from Tahiti. "Variants" of Grapefruit were not introduced to Tahiti until the 20th century. See more »
My dear God. I had hoped to avoid this.
Avoid what, sir?
Damn it all, man. I'm expected to sleep with her. She's one of King Tynah's wives. A gift from one chief to another, as it were. Now look, five minutes after I go below you must call me up on some important business, all right?
Yes, sir. What business?
Business, damn it; any bloody business.
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The Bounty is in my opinion perhaps the best, most realistic and most historically accurate film of the 3 films made about this historical event, The Bounty Mutiny. It offers the most three-dimensional and a far more human portrayal of Captain Bligh than its' predecessors. And Anthony Hopkins, as always, shines in this part. Mel Gibson is the romantic lead and as such does very well. Daniel Day-Lewis makes one of his more villainish appearances as the arrogant and rather unlikable Mr. Fryer. And Liam Neeson is also featured in one of his early parts, playing the brutal but charismatic and likable Churchill.
It is a strong picture, the one that delves deepest in the psyches of the two main protagonists of this real-life drama. Bligh is portrayed as overly ambitious, strict and harsh, but honorable and a strong personality, while Fletcher is portrayed as sympathetic, honest and emotional, Bligh's polar opposite, who also cares less for honor and loyalty and more for his feelings. This makes him turn emotionally and psychologically unstable in a very climactic and well shot mutiny scene.
Many will side with Fletcher Christian as always, but also many more are likely to be torn between the two sides or at least have sympathy for Bligh, unlike with the previous movies, because here he exhibits much more human traits. He even reaches out to Christian in one scene and tries to help get his mind on the right track and off his infatuation, the one that will eventually help trigger the mutiny. In both other Bounty films, he's a pure sadist who won't stop at any lengths to enforce his iron will and discipline. Here he starts showing these traits only after Christian rejects his friendly advice. So in a way, this film to an extent blames Christian for not being patient and reasonable enough to preserve the peace with his commander and help maintain the stability on the ship.
So it's both a beautiful and a realistic film. Beautiful because of the landscape shots and not least the half-nude aboriginal girls and realistic because there are no typical villains or heroes in it, just people brought in a difficult situation. Kudos to Roger Donaldson for bringing more realism into this, one of the most famous and celebrated love stories in history.
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