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Captains Courageous (1937)

Passed | | Adventure, Drama, Family | 25 June 1937 (USA)
Trailer
2:27 | Trailer
A spoiled brat who falls overboard from a steamship gets picked up by a fishing boat, where he's made to earn his keep by joining the crew in their work.

Director:

Victor Fleming

Writers:

Rudyard Kipling (novel), John Lee Mahin (screen play) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Freddie Bartholomew ... Harvey
Spencer Tracy ... Manuel
Lionel Barrymore ... Disko
Melvyn Douglas ... Mr. Cheyne
Charley Grapewin ... Uncle Salters
Mickey Rooney ... Dan
John Carradine ... 'Long Jack'
Oscar O'Shea ... Cushman
Jack La Rue ... Priest (as Jack LaRue)
Walter Kingsford ... Dr. Finley
Donald Briggs ... Tyler
Sam McDaniel ... 'Doc' (as Sam McDaniels)
Bill Burrud ... Charles (as Billy Burrud)
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Storyline

Harvey Cheyne is a spoiled brat used to having his own way. When a prank goes wrong onboard an ocean liner Harvey ends up overboard and nearly drowns. Fortunately he's picked up by a fishing boat just heading out for the season. He tries to bribe the crew into returning early to collect a reward but none of them believe him. Stranded on the boat he must adapt to the ways of the fishermen and learn more about the real world. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Again-as in the stirring "Mutiny"- you live the roaring drama of men against the sea. You share the struggles, the heartaches, the laughter of courageous souls who leave the women they love to dare the wrath of the angry waves... See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Portuguese

Release Date:

25 June 1937 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rudyard Kipling's Captains Courageous See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,645,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Spencer Tracy found the main challenge in playing Manuel was to put him across as a genuinely happy man, without making him seem like an idiot. MGM general manager Edward Mannix warned Tracy not to attempt an accent, because he would sound ridiculous. See more »

Goofs

(at around 30 mins) Harvey hits Manuel twice on the left shin with an oar. Manuel then boasts to the crew that Harvey would do anything for him, "Even break my leg maybe too". (at around 51 mins) Manuel holds up his right (the wrong) leg and rubs it. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Burns: [to the maid as he adjusts her tray] There'll be none of that. No trays.
Dr. Finley: [hurriedly relaying highlighted news updates to Mr. Cheyne as he wolfs down breakfast] The Star Telegram has you quoted quite definitely: 'before departing by plane for New York, Mr. Cheyne stated that the new equipment is to be provided by the present bond issue.' The other papers have virtually the same.
Frank Burton Cheyne: What do the confidentials say?
Dr. Finley: Tuesday morning, Paris wires: the president will probably sign the batamant ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits are letters on planks, like the lettering on the side of ships, and between screen-fulls, a foaming wave of water splashes over it and then runs off. In the initial sets of credits, these appear to be actually letter-forms attached to the wood, as the water gets deflected by some of the letters; in later sets of credits, this effect is harder to see and the sets may be credits superimposed upon wood. See more »

Connections

Featured in The 40th Annual Academy Awards (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

Rock of Ages
(uncredited)
Music by Thomas Hastings (1830)
Lyrics by Augustus Montague Toplady (1776)
Sung by all at the Fishermen's Memorial
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A warm and wonderful film the subject of which is timeless.
28 November 2002 | by xalf18See all my reviews

This is my favorite movie of all time. I have seen thousands of movies but none can come near Captains Courageous for its warmth, compassion, drama and meaningfulness. A wonderful story of single-parent bonding and hero worship.

Spencer Tracy as Manuel the Portugese fisherman was absolutely fantastic. Just looking at the sparkle in his eyes when mentoring Harvey (Freddie Bartholomew) was beautiful. I have shown this film to my senior class in Strategic Management and they all loved it. And what a supporting cast, Lionel Barrymore, Melvin Douglas, Mickey Rooney, John Caradine. It was also one of the first Hollywood movies to treat a black character with dignity and respect. The ship's cook was even bilingual, speaking both English and Portugese, and was a respected member of the crew, not just an Uncle Tom.

They don't make them any better than this--and not a single word of profanity, no sex or sexual episodes, must a wonderful story, well acted, sad but uplifting.


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