The Bounty (1984) / Drama-Adventure
MPAA Rated: PG for nudity and violence
Running Time: 132 min.
Cast: Mel Gibson, Anthony Hopkins, Laurence Olivier, Edward Fox, Daniel Day-Lewis, Liam Neeson, Bernard Hill
Director: Roger Donaldson
Screenplay: Robert Bolt
Review published October 6, 1996
Another telling of the famed Mutiny on the Bounty, based on Richard Hough's book, "Captain Bligh and Mr. Christian", depicting a ship which was taken over by some of the men due to their lack of faith in their sometimes cruel captain, Bligh.
The best quality of the epic, The Bounty, comes from the outstanding performances by the leads, while the fact that Bligh is drawn as somewhat sympathetic, instead of a raving mad lunatic, makes for a much more realistic and quite interesting telling. The love story involving Fletcher Christian (Gibson, The Road Warrior) is also shown, albiet briefly, but in many ways, it helps the film bring a softer, human side.
The score by Vangelis (Blade Runner, Chariots of Fire) is also quite beautiful and Roger Donaldson's (No Way Out, Cocktail) directing is as competent as you'd expect. That said, there is a certain aloofness that settles in, mostly due to there not being anyone to really root for, and despite the quality cast and crew, there isn't the level of involvement you'd prefer to see in a rather longish film.
©1996 Vince Leo