11 March 2007 | MartinHafer
Pretty entertaining and with a great sense of adventure
This is a pretty entertaining film that works pretty well due to decent writing and an excellent villain in the form of George Sanders. The film begins with a young boy being forcibly taken from his loving grandfather and the boy is made a stable boy for a rich baronet. It seems that this rich guy (Sanders) is actually the kid's uncle but instead of being kind, he treats the kid like dirt. The reasons are because the uncle wants to keep the family fortune for himself AND because something about his dead brother and his wife bother him so intensely that he wants to make their child's life hell. The boy is played by Roddy McDowell, but after the first 15 minutes or so, he is "Hollywood aged" and is played by Tyrone Power. Power is very good in the film, but a few macho scenes didn't seem all that plausible--especially after seeing his rather scrawny frame once he took his shirt off part-way through the film.
Well, Power cannot stay at the manor to take the abuse forever, especially since the uncle seems intent on eventually killing him--beating him savagely and making up a story that Power attacked and tried to kill him! So, he runs off to sea and meets up with a friend, John Carradine --in one of his non-crazy or monster roles. Together they plan to jump ship, make their fortunes and return to England. Well, all this DOESN'T go exactly as planned and Power meets a beautiful native girl played pretty convincingly by Gene Tierney. What happens next I really don't want to divulge--it would spoil the film's many surprises. However, the film does have many twists and surprises--especially at the end and enough that it elevates this film above the norm and makes it very watchable--nearly earning it a score of 8.