The Spanish Main is a colorful, typical swashbuckler starring the red-headed Irish spitfire Maureen O’Hara, and it’s all right as far as these things go, but it hardly seems the work of Frank Borzage. It stands as one of his filler films, an anonymous assignment, like Flight Command or Stage Door Canteen, movies that could have been made by anyone. Herman J. Mankiewicz, the screenwriter of Citizen Kane and many other fine films, co-wrote the screenplay, which cannibalizes everything from Captain Blood to The Black Swan. There are swordfights, whippings, action, and Binnie Barnes as a macho female pirate. But nothing distinguishes The Spanish Main from a dozen other pirate films of this ilk, so that the auteur theory seems to go to sleep momentarily, replaced by the “versatility” prized by studio bosses and imposed on creators.
- 110 min
- Frank Borzage
- George Washington Yates, Herman J. Mankiewicz
- Maureen O'Hara, Paul Henreid, Walter Slezak, Binnie Barnes, John Emery
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