There has always been a fascination with Hollywood film directors about the sea, the ships and the sailors that have sailed the waves. The sea remains the largest unconquered area on the planet, and even the colossal giant oil tankers and aircraft carriers are specks in the water looking the size of snowflakes in an avalanche. Many movies have featured great tales about the ships that have sailed the seven seas and we have to start the blog with the ill-fated Titanic.
Possibly the most famous ship that ever took to the high seas, and its fame is not because of heroic naval success, it is about one of the worst sailing disasters ever to have taken place. As soon as anybody mentions adjectives such as the very best, or the most exciting ever, you touch on a human characteristic and that is people like failure. And once the White Star Line billed their latest ship the Titanic as Unsinkable the tragic vessel was doomed from the very start. Many films have been made about the Titanic, but the most famous was the epic simply titled Titanic in 1997. This adaptation is mostly fictional with many liberties taken about the real events that happened on the 14th April 1912 in the icy waters of the Atlantic Ocean. But nevertheless, the love story between Jack and Rose is thoroughly engaging and makes the movie memorable for a different reason than tragedy.
The fictional tale of perhaps the most famous mutiny on the sea, is the adaptation of the novel written by Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall. The film Mutiny on the Bounty retells the real-life mutiny aboard the ship the Bounty. The Bounty was an armed ship that set sail in 1787 under William Bligh, to secure breadfruit plants from Tahiti and deliver them to the West Indies as nourishment for the slaves. Under intolerable conditions, and the preference to stay in paradise, Fletcher Christian led an armed mutiny and took control of the ship. Bligh and eighteen other loyal sailors were cast adrift in a boat with only five days rations and no charts.
The African Queen
Possibly the most un-heroic boat to star in a movie has to be the African Queen. The film was directed by the legendary John Huston and starred Humphrey Bogart and Katherine Hepburn. The hero of the film is the small steam launch that becomes a savior when war is announced between Germany and Britain. True to form the Germans are the baddies and burn down a mission and herd the villagers away. The owner and skipper of the African Queen attempts to rescue the British missionary but is chased by a German gunboat. The steam launch is converted into a torpedo boat and it sinks the German brigands. The captain Charlie Allnut and the missionary Rose encounter many obstacles on their plight to safety in their plucky little boat, and the movie is an absolute classic.These nautical stars of the wide screen relay marvelous tales of courage over adversity, in each of the films the boat is the star and the main focus of the movie.