Every now and then I enjoy watching old black and white movies, I find it both entertaining and educational. “‘Captain Blood”‘ came out on 1935 and was one of the best movies that year being nominated for 2 Oscars.
This was the first major American movie for Errol Flynn who was lucky to replace Robert Donat in the title role of Peter Blood, smart young handsome man who went on to be he biggest pirate of the Caribbean Sea.
Errol is young, handsome and dashing through the movie, if you enjoy watching Pirates of the Caribbean, you should watch this movie, it has plenty action, fight scenes and it has many colorful characters to keep you on your toes.
Olivia de Havilland looks stunning as his love interest Arabella Bishop and no wonder they acted in 8 more movies together, their chemistry on the set is so obvious. Later Olivia confessed that she had a huge crush on Errol during this film, they later briefly dated but moved on quickly.
This movie was directed by Michael Curtiz who won an Oscar 1942 from his most famous masterpiece Casablanca. Curtiz was described as mean and demanding director and according to press he and Errol Flynn did not get along at all.
Errol Flynn meets Arabella first as a slave she decides to buy for herself and soon smart dashing Peter Blood is known as a doctor who can treat King’s foot but at the same time he plans to escape with his slave friends to be once again free. Arabella’s uncle Colonel Bishop is played by Lionel Atwill who later played Inspector Crogh in Son of Frankenstein.
Lionel Atwill’s career was later ruined by public “orgy” at his home, naked guests and porno films and accused rape without court revealing guests names he was sentenced to five years’ probation.
Highlights on this movie are the scenes of Peter Blood with French pirate Captain Levasseur played by Basil Rathbone. These two rule the sea and decide to join their forces but there is a problem. Peter Blood is a true gentleman and would never take a woman hostage against her will but Captain Levasseur is womanizer who enjoys any lady’s company.
Finally there is a long scene of those two fighting over Arabella Bishop in an island and now Peter Blood owns her just like she owned her before.
Peter Blood tells her he can do whatever he pleases with her but being a true gentleman he stays away and decides to return her to her home even if it would cost him and his crew their life’s.
Ending of this movie is to me little too “happily ever after” and I could skip some of the fighting scenes on the sea but I did enjoy Errol Flynn playing a very believable character and showing why he would later be such great Robin Hood.
December 2008 it was announced that John Brownlow, writer of Brittish movie Hero, is set to write a screenplay for a remake of this movie, so Peter Blood will once again rule the seas in the future but who is talented enough to replace Errol Flynn, hard task to fill!