The Decks Ran Red

  • 1958
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Thriller

Andrew and Virginia Stone have made some good, tight little thrillers. This is not one of them. He is a fine director and she is a tasteful editor, but neither of them is a dialog writer, and the results are often so laughable that they ruin whatever else is good. Mason is miscast as the former first mate of a liner who is flow down under to take over command...read more

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Andrew and Virginia Stone have made some good, tight little thrillers. This is not one of them. He is a fine director and she is a tasteful editor, but neither of them is a dialog writer, and the results are often so laughable that they ruin whatever else is good. Mason is miscast as the

former first mate of a liner who is flow down under to take over command of a dingy, creaky freighter, the SS Berwind, because the captain has just passed away. Once on the ship, Mason is faced by a sullen crew and an overall atmosphere of tension. The presence of Dandridge aboard doesn't help the

good humor of the frustrated men. She is married to the Maori cook but not above tossing a come-hither glance around. Crawford and Whitman have other plans for the ship. They intend to murder the captain and the crew, scuttle the vessel to make it look derelict, then bring it in as salvage and

collect the insurance money, about a million bucks. There is a huge denouement scene with lots of violence and many of the crew being killed (now you know where the title comes from), with Mason finally vanquishing Crawford and ending the mutiny. The picture made some serious money, considering

that it didn't cost very much. Nicholson's camerawork is excellent as is the sound recording. The Stones didn't use any music and the sound of the sea and the creaking vessel was accompaniment enough to the suspense. With better dialog, this could have been a corking good picture.

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Andrew and Virginia Stone have made some good, tight little thrillers. This is not one of them. He is a fine director and she is a tasteful editor, but neither of them is a dialog writer, and the results are often so laughable that they ruin whatever else… (more)

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