I Conquer the Sea! (1936)

68 or 70 mins | Drama | 24 January 1936

Director:

Victor Halperin

Producer:

Edward Halperin

Cinematographer:

Arthur Martinelli

Editor:

Douglas Briggs

Production Designer:

F. Paul Sylos

Production Company:

Halperin Pictures
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HISTORY

Only the first reel of this film was available for viewing. The remainder of the plot, after the preacher and Leonard promise to help Pedro walk again, was based on information in reviews. The working title of this film was Thrill of a Century . This was the Halperin brothers' first production. Portions of this film were shot at Laguna Beach, CA. According to an onscreen foreword, I Conquer the Sea! was filmed on location in Newfoundland and was dedicated "to the last of the heroic whalers of Newfoundland, Canada--where the action of this story is laid--and to our intrepid staff and crew who spent one long hazardous year 'ahunting whales' to complete this production." The film opens with three Biblical quotes: Psalms 104:26 , "There is that Leviathan"; Psalms 89:9 , "Thou stillest the waves"; and Jonah 2:10 , "Jonah upon the dry land." Stanley Morner appears in this film courtesy of M-G-M. According to a news item in Var in 1951, writer Richard Carroll claimed that this film was based on his story "Storm in Their Hearts." The news item also states that Carroll was suing Favorite Films Corp., Nu-Art Films and Joan of Arch Pictures for distribution rights to the film. Carroll claimed that, through an agreement with Academy Pictures, all rights to the film reverted to him in 1946. Carroll also claimed that the film's alternate title was The Sea Bandit . The outcome of the suit is ... More Less

Only the first reel of this film was available for viewing. The remainder of the plot, after the preacher and Leonard promise to help Pedro walk again, was based on information in reviews. The working title of this film was Thrill of a Century . This was the Halperin brothers' first production. Portions of this film were shot at Laguna Beach, CA. According to an onscreen foreword, I Conquer the Sea! was filmed on location in Newfoundland and was dedicated "to the last of the heroic whalers of Newfoundland, Canada--where the action of this story is laid--and to our intrepid staff and crew who spent one long hazardous year 'ahunting whales' to complete this production." The film opens with three Biblical quotes: Psalms 104:26 , "There is that Leviathan"; Psalms 89:9 , "Thou stillest the waves"; and Jonah 2:10 , "Jonah upon the dry land." Stanley Morner appears in this film courtesy of M-G-M. According to a news item in Var in 1951, writer Richard Carroll claimed that this film was based on his story "Storm in Their Hearts." The news item also states that Carroll was suing Favorite Films Corp., Nu-Art Films and Joan of Arch Pictures for distribution rights to the film. Carroll claimed that, through an agreement with Academy Pictures, all rights to the film reverted to him in 1946. Carroll also claimed that the film's alternate title was The Sea Bandit . The outcome of the suit is undetermined. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
19 Nov 35
p. 3.
Daily Variety
4 Dec 35
p. 4.
Daily Variety
17 Jan 36
p. 3.
Film Daily
16 Jan 36
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
9 Jan 36
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Jan 36
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Jan 36
p. 2.
Motion Picture Daily
16 Jan 36
p. 8.
Motion Picture Herald
25 Jan 36
pp. 38-39.
Variety
29 Jan 36
p. 16.
Variety
5-Dec-51
---
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
The Sea Bandit
Thrill of a Century
Release Date:
24 January 1936
Premiere Information:
World premiere: New Bedford, MA, 16 January 1936
New York opening: 23 January 1936
Production Date:
began filming in Laguna Beach, CA on 18 November 1935
Copyright Claimant:
Academy Pictures Distributing Corp.
Copyright Date:
7 January 1936
Copyright Number:
LP6061
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
68 or 70
Length(in reels):
7
Country:
United States
PCA No:
1623
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

A small Newfoundland whaling community holds a church service for lost whalers. In the church yard lie the gravestones of those who have drowned while whaling. The church walls are covered with murals depicting the whaling experience. When the Gonzales family, Portuguese immigrants, cross the church door, one of the whalers forbids them entry, until Tommy, a master harpoonist who loves daughter Rosita Gonzales, allows them to enter. Rosita's younger brother Pedro is a cripple on crutches. The preacher and Tommy's older brother Leonard, a doctor, promise to help Pedro walk again. Tommy and Rosita become engaged, but when Leonard heals Pedro, she falls in love with him. Tommy then loses his arm in a whaling accident. His grief is compounded when, at their engagement party, Rosita breaks with him. Tommy, in a self-sacrificing mood, goes out on a whaling expedition, even though he has lost his good harpooning arm. During the expedition, Tommy successfully harpoons a whale, but when its mate arrives to rescue it, the mate capsizes the boat. Leonard and Tommy nearly drown and are stranded on a bed of rocks. While Leonard swims to shore for help, Tommy relives his life and dreams of happiness with Rosita. Realizing he loves Leonard even more than he loves Rosita, Tommy decides to kill himself so that they may be happy, and allows himself to drown. During his memorial service, Tommy's spirit appears in the church to give his blessing to the new ... +


A small Newfoundland whaling community holds a church service for lost whalers. In the church yard lie the gravestones of those who have drowned while whaling. The church walls are covered with murals depicting the whaling experience. When the Gonzales family, Portuguese immigrants, cross the church door, one of the whalers forbids them entry, until Tommy, a master harpoonist who loves daughter Rosita Gonzales, allows them to enter. Rosita's younger brother Pedro is a cripple on crutches. The preacher and Tommy's older brother Leonard, a doctor, promise to help Pedro walk again. Tommy and Rosita become engaged, but when Leonard heals Pedro, she falls in love with him. Tommy then loses his arm in a whaling accident. His grief is compounded when, at their engagement party, Rosita breaks with him. Tommy, in a self-sacrificing mood, goes out on a whaling expedition, even though he has lost his good harpooning arm. During the expedition, Tommy successfully harpoons a whale, but when its mate arrives to rescue it, the mate capsizes the boat. Leonard and Tommy nearly drown and are stranded on a bed of rocks. While Leonard swims to shore for help, Tommy relives his life and dreams of happiness with Rosita. Realizing he loves Leonard even more than he loves Rosita, Tommy decides to kill himself so that they may be happy, and allows himself to drown. During his memorial service, Tommy's spirit appears in the church to give his blessing to the new couple. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.