Torture Ship (1939)

June 12, 2011

 

The advertising says it is based on the first published Jack London short story “A Thousand Deaths” but I really have to call that a reach. Read for yourself http://www.jacklondons.net/thousanddeaths.html    watch the movie and decide for yourself. The Sam Neufeld Production starred a very young Lyle Talbot, who did supporting roles in practically every television show in the 50’s and 60’s, Julie Bishop, and Irving Pichel. Weird experiments to create a vaccine to cure antisocial behavior takes place aboard a ship going nowhere in particular. Although he has good enough motives he still has to kill people along the way to achieve his goals. If this film had stuck to the London short story it would have been interesting viewing. As it was filmed it was slow moving with a lot of fist fighting not very well staged. This one is available for free viewing on the Internet Archive with 10 minutes cut from the one available from Alpha Video (ALP 4142D) at a very reasonable cost. http://www.archive.org/details/TortureShip

The main reason to watch this in my opinion is to see how far off Hollywood got away from the script. (*)

 

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