Ebb Tide (1937)

Approved   |    |  Adventure, Drama, Romance

Ebb Tide (1937) Poster

Three shifty sailors commandeer a smallpox-ridden boat and set out to sea. A typhoon washes them ashore on a faraway Pacific island, which is ruled by a white religious fanatic (Lloyd Nolan) who has set himself up as the local god.



  • Ray Milland and Frances Farmer in Ebb Tide (1937)
  • Ray Milland and Frances Farmer in Ebb Tide (1937)
  • Lina Basquette and Lloyd Nolan in Ebb Tide (1937)
  • Frances Farmer in Ebb Tide (1937)
  • Frances Farmer in Ebb Tide (1937)
  • Oskar Homolka in Ebb Tide (1937)

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26 March 2001 | jmk56
| Frances Farmer's only technicolor film
One of the strangest films to come from a major studio during the golden era of Hollywood, "Ebb Tide" was promoted as "the first South Seas drama in COLOR", and boasts an eclectic (to say the least) cast, including Oscar Homolka (in his US feature debut), Frances Farmer (in her only color film), Ray Milland, Barry Fitzgerald and Lloyd Nolan. Dour, pessimistic, and full of tortured close-ups of Homolka grimacing, this was probably not what movie-goers of 1937 were expecting. On the plus-side, the performances are riveting (though Homolka is difficult to understand at times), and the chance to see the ravishing Farmer in Technicolor splendor is worth wading through a turgid plot involving three ne'er-do-wells shanghaing a quarantined ship to the tropical paradise island of Tehua, where they meet madman Lloyd Nolan. There's also an exciting storm sequence which was the "Perfect Storm" of its day. Based on a story co-written by Robert Louis Stevenson. The only broadcast print in wide circulation is edited and is badly in need of color correction.

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