The Sea Hawk (Sous-titres français) [Import]
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Flynn,Errol ~ Sea Hawk
Five years after Captain Blood made him a swashbuckling star, Errol Flynn returned to the high seas as privateer Captain Thorpe in The Sea Hawk. Flynn plays the dashing gentleman pirate as dedicated patriot, looting Spanish ships for English coffers with the private blessing of Queen Elizabeth (Flora Robson, reprising the role from Fire over England). The film opens with a rousing sea battle: broadside cannon fire sends masts falling and splinters a-flying before Flynn's men take their Spanish quarry in a furious shipboard cutlass battle. The fearless fighter becomes a stumbling schoolboy when he falls for the Spanish ambassador's niece, but he's back in his element when he sails to the New World for treasure and lands in the middle of a deadly conspiracy. Big-eyed beauty Brenda Marshall stands in for Flynn's usual love interest Olivia de Havilland, and the film misses the latter's sass and spirit, but it's a minor shortcoming. Claude Rains plays his usual smoothly conniving villain, and hearty Alan Hale returns as Flynn's loyal sidekick. Michael Curtiz proves once again why he was Warner Brothers' top director with a handsome, action-packed film that mixes intrigue and suspense with grand set pieces, concluding with a rousing series of escapes, chases, and a runaway sword fight. Classic Hollywood swashbuckling at its best. --Sean Axmaker --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Like the other reviewers have noted, Errol Flynn is at his best. The cast is generally superb, although I would have cast something closer to a real Spaniard for Don Alvarez instead of - again! - Claude Rains. As a Spaniard, he should at least have tempered his British accent. Flora Robson as Queen Elizabeth I is simply the best Elizabeth I have ever seen on film. (Sorry Bette Davis and Judi Dench.)
This film is not only thrilling, dashing, and heartwarming, it is really "about" something. And since September of 2001, this film has suddenly taken on yet a new meaning for our own time.
I am holding my breath for a DVD of this soon?? And please, be careful with the sound transfer. The music for this film is one of the finest film scores ever composed.
In one of his finest performances, Errol Flynn is Captain Geoffrey Thorpe, an English privateer modeled after Sir Francis Drake. War looms between Elizabethan England and Spain. We meet Captain Thorpe when he captures a Spanish ship carrying the new Ambassador, Don Alvarez, and his half-English niece, Donna Maria (played by a radiant Brenda Marshall). As Thorpe conveys the ambassador to England, sparks fly between him and Donna Maria, of the sort that let us know that they're made for each other.
At Queen Elizabeth's court, Thorpe's fellow "sea hawks" press the queen to build up a fleet, while her counselor Lord Wolfingham opposes them. Thorpe, with the queen's completely unofficial sanction, plans a blow against the Spanish, while his romance with Maria blossoms. But wait, why is Lord Wolfingham spending all that time with the Spanish Ambassador...
Besides Flynn and Marshall, the film boasts standout performances from Flora Robson as Queen Elizabeth, Claude Rains as Don Alvarez (surprisingly sympathetic towards his niece and her love for Thorpe), and Henry Daniell as the sinister, well-named Wolfingham. Farther down the cast you have solid performances from the likes of Alan Hale, Una O'Connor and Donald Crisp.
The jewel in "The Sea Hawk's" crown is Erich Wolfgang Korngold's score. Korngold was the John Williams of his day, the master of the rich orchestral film score. Why he didn't win an Oscar for this, his finest score of all, is one of Hollywood's many mysteries.
But of course, so is the question of why Hollywood doesn't make movies like this anymore.
Flynn is Captain Thorpe, an English privateer who raids the galleys of Spain and who falls in love with a lovely Spanish lady. (Brenda Marshall does well enough but as pointed out before, it's just not the same without Olivia DeHavilland) Flynn's acting has improved and his nervous wooing of the proud Spanish dona is very sweet. But then, what people really want in a Flynn movie is action. The movie for the most part delivers. (There is a bit of dragging near the middle but the movie quickly gets back on track) Thorpe goes to raid the Spanish silver mines in South America and is captured by a vindictive Spanish rival. From that point on, the movie speeds to a very good climax. My only real complaint is that the famed Spanish Armada is never shown.
The supporting cast of the movie is also very good. Claude Rains, playing a good guy for once, is a doting uncle to Brenda Marshall. And Flora Robson throws her all into the role of Elizabeth I, bringing out her temper, her flirtation and her eccentricities. The movie sparkles whenever she is on-screen, especially with Flynn. They play off of one another very well.
While this is a very good swashbuckler, it has absolutely nothing to do with the book it is supposedly based on! The film historians I have read say that probably the plot of the original book was too far removed from the realities of WWII to be made into a movie. (The original plot involved an Elizabethan nobleman who is framed for murder, sold into slavery, escapes and converts to Islam and become a corsair.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Great 1940 B&W classic pirate/swashbuckler movie and a must have for avid Errol Flynn fans.Published 9 months ago by P.E.B.
I had seen this movie several times, but not for a long while. I liked it this time as much as any of the previous viewings.Published 14 months ago by Michael Stern
If you liked Errol Flynn in Captain Blood or Don Juan, I am sure that you will also love this movie. I believe it was nominated for 4 academy awards. Read morePublished on March 12 2014 by Arcanum
Warner Bros. Pictures presents "THE SEA HAWK" (1940) (127 min/B&W) (Fully Restored/Dolby Digitally Remastered) -- Starring Errol Flynn, Brenda Marshall, Claude Rains, Donald Crisp... Read morePublished on Feb. 13 2011 by J. Lovins
A REVIEW BY NICK EVANGELISTA:
The Sea Hawk is one of the great swashbuckler films of all time. Errol Fylnn was in top form for the movie. The fencing is a joy to watch. Read more
This movie deserves 5 stars and so I had to vote. Great adventure, message, and appropriate for children. The action and story is awesome.Published on March 23 2004 by raleighnc
This is a great Errol Flynn classic. His performance is excellent. The music by Korngold is some of the best ever written for a movie! Read morePublished on July 21 2003
This is a great movie.. I gave this as a DVD gift and the results of the film was POOR!!!... Picture was blurry and sound was awful.. Read morePublished on June 22 2003 by Anthony skoien
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