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The Beachcomber (1954)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 10 August 1954 (UK)
Ewart Gray (Donald Sinden) is the new Resident-in-Charge of the Welcome Islands in the Indian Ocean. The Islands are full of life, but the only other Europeans are the "sanctimonious, ... See full summary »

Director:

Muriel Box

Writers:

Sydney Box (screenplay), W. Somerset Maugham (story)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Glynis Johns ... Martha Jones
Robert Newton ... Edward 'Honorable Ted' Wilson
Donald Sinden ... Ewart Gray
Paul Rogers ... Rev. Owen Jones
Donald Pleasence ... Tromp
Walter Crisham ... Vederala
Michael Hordern ... The Headman
Auric Lorand Auric Lorand ... Alfred - Major Domo
Tony Quinn Tony Quinn ... Ship Captain
Ah Chong Choy Ah Chong Choy ... Wang - the Barkeep
Ronald Lewis ... Headman's Son
Jeanne Roland Jeanne Roland ... Amao (as Jean Rollins)
Lizabeth Rollins Lizabeth Rollins ... Girl at Maputiti
Michael Mellinger ... Medical Orderly
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Storyline

Ewart Gray (Donald Sinden) is the new Resident-in-Charge of the Welcome Islands in the Indian Ocean. The Islands are full of life, but the only other Europeans are the "sanctimonious, psalm-singing" brother and sister missionary team of Martha Jones (Glynis Johns) and Reverend Owen Jones (Paul Rogers), and Edward "Honorable Ted" Wilson (Robert Newton) - a hard-drinking, womanizing social outcast whose English family pays him to stay away. Martha and Ted become an unlikely team when cholera threatens the islands and they must do their best to stop its spread. Written by A.L.Beneteau <albl@inforamp.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Thundering With New Might and Magnificence! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

10 August 1954 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Le vagabond des îles See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Colour by) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Theatrical movie debut of Donald Pleasence (Tromp). See more »

Goofs

When some characters are pinioned to the ground the green grass behind their heads in close-ups does not match the burned grass of the location shots. See more »

Connections

Remake of The Beachcomber (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

Onward Christian Soldiers
(uncredited)
Music by Arthur Sullivan and lyrics by Sabine Baring-Gould
Performed by Martha Jones, Headman and the natives
See more »

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User Reviews

 
On the Beach
26 September 2001 | by eddie-83See all my reviews

There were two reasons why I looked forward to seeing 'The Beachcomber'. They were Robert Newton and Glynis Johns. Newton, off-screen a roisterer in the Richard Burton, Trevor Howard mould gave full-blooded performances in movies like 'Blackbeard the Pirate' and 'Treasure Island' and I loved his outrageous, eye-rolling style. And Glynis Johns has one of those scratchy, sexy voices that I find almost irresistible.

Imagine my disappointment to find Ms Johns playing a pious missionary nurse with a Welsh accent and no opportunity to sound sexy. Mind you she was nothing if not versatile, at one stage performing an appendectomy while later healing an elephant's injured trunk. And Newton, ideally cast as a drunken remittance man (the 'black sheep' of an upper class English family being paid to stay away) is at half power throughout, missing every chance for histrionics.

There's some pleasant location Technicolor photography in the pacific islands and a bar-room brawl hammier than anything john Ford ever choreographed for Messrs. Wayne and McGlagen but the practice of blacking up Donald Pleasance, Ronald Lewis and possibly others to play natives is always offensive.

The plot from usually interesting Somerset Maugham is just the old chestnut about the redemptive power of a good woman's love. Though there is another moral to the story – 'an elephant never forgets'


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