24 April 2012 | hitchcockthelegend
Well, lower me jib a bustle!
Buccaneer's Girl is directed by Frederick De Cordova and jointly written by Samuel Golding, Joseph Hoffman, Joe May and Harold Shumate. It stars Yvonne De Carlo, Philip Friend, Robert Douglas, Elsa Lanchester and Henry Daniell. Music is scored by Walter Scharf and Technicolor cinematography is by Russell Metty.
Avast yee lubbers on the Universal lot as the radiant De Carlo plays a spitfire gal finding her man amongst much jollification on the piratical high seas.
Budget is cut close to the cloth, editing is C grade and the ending is so quick in coming you have to rewind just to check you didn't press the skip function on the remote control by mistake! While it's true, also, to say that the song and dance numbers inserted into the mix are badly choreographed and borderline embarrassing. This is one of those films where the trailer gives no real indication of just how jolly and cheap it is, a film that if I had paid at the cinema to see back on its release I would have been most annoyed. But many years later, with a pristine DVD transfer to sample along with a bottle of ice cold Chardonay? It's a pretty fun way to spend an hour and twenty minutes. On proviso, that is, you happen to be a fan of Technicolor swashbucklers made in knockabout fashion.
Russell Metty's colour photography is gorgeous, so much so it deserves a better movie, while costuming (Yvonne Wood) is of a high standard, particularly for the ladies. The cast, a mixed set of performers for sure, make the light weight material work, with the likes of Lanchester, Daniell & Douglas seriously knowing what is required. Friend cuts a handsome figure with his immaculate ruff's and pencil moustache, and in supporting slots Jay C. Flippen and Norman Lloyd leave favourable impressions. Scharf scores it with standard skull and crossbones flavours, which in turn sits easily with the frothy nature of the beast, and the fight sequences, resplendent with cheapo weapon props, are far from the worst in the genre.
With interesting twists and a good old sense of fun about it, there's enough here for the undemanding pirate fan to enjoy. Just don't expect the drama suggested by the trailer is all! 6/10