on August 17, 2003
This film is a throwback to the classic war films pre-Saving Private Ryan. Since that film, a very good one I might add, Hollywood has attempted to out-blood n' gore itself with each new war movie. Well that's certainly a part of war, possibly THE single most important part at the personal level of conflict, but it's not necessary for a film to entertain. If all you want is to see suffering, spend a Friday night at any inner city ER. No, The Sea Wolves is something more. It tells the tale of a band of aged Boer War veterans enlisted by the British Special Operations Executive to conduct a clandestine raid on a German merchant ship transmitting intelligence to U-boats cruising the Indian Ocean. As is usually the case with Hollywood, the film takes some liberties with the actual event but it is quite entertaining nonetheless. David Niven is superb, as always. Gregory Peck's role was equalling well done, if one can excuse the rather poor English accent that tends to fade in and out. The tongue-in-cheek, very British exchanges between he and Roger Moore are quite enjoyable. I hadn't seen this movie in 20+ years and it is as entertaining as ever. I'm happy to see that lesser known films like The Sea Wolves are making it onto DVD. Just don't expect lots of body parts flying about or language that would make Mike Tyson blush.
on December 19, 1999
Gregory Peck, Roger Moore and David Niven are the lead actors in this true story having taken place in WW II in India and Goa. It is shot on location where it happened, giving great authenicity to the scenes and how they took place. I think just about every older English actor who has appeared in any war films is present here. This was one of the reasons I liked the film. A gathering of "old" friends in one place from the other films gives it credence as you know they are well trained, in a way. This is sort of like "The Wild Geese", same cast of characters in the support roles. The print of the film in 1.85 to 1 letterbox is of great quality. The surround sound works well. While the subject matter of getting the sinking of ships stopped is serious, there are many very funny spots as the older men of the Light Horse get geared up for war after 40 some years. There is one especially tender moment when David Niven is shaving at 5am and his wife is worried about another woman. Both Gregory Peck and Roger Moore play their respective characters believably. Not sure why they didn't check one character out............
on September 30, 2005
I first saw this film on HBO. I tuned in because two long-time favourites (Roger Moore & Patrick Macnee) were listed. I watched it over several times, bought it on VHS, and now own it on DVD.
This is based on a true event in WWII, when the British were losing cargo to a U-Boat pack in the Indian Ocean. Since the problem stemmed from the neutral Portugese port of Goa, nothing 'official' could be done. The Calcutta Light Horse, a group of retired British military, are recruited to do the impossible, and pulled it off. The event was declassified in 1980, and the film was made. Most of the cast is portraying actual persons involved, as shown in the end credits.
To play the 'past prime' Light Horse members, the film recruited major names: David Niven, Trevor Howard, Kenneth Griffith, Morgan Sheppard, Patrick Allen, Glyn Houston, and a cadre of others you will know. The "thin on top, thick in the middle" troops are led by professional soldiers Gregory Peck, Roger Moore, and Patrick Macnee. Peck plays Col. Lewis Pugh, a colonel whose family was in Coventry when it was plastered by the Luftwaffe. Moore plays Capt. Gavin Stewart, a bit of a playboy who falls for local lovely spy Barbara Kellerman. Macnee plays Major "Yogi" Crossley, the explosives expert fond of reading the paper while standing on his head. All cast members are well up to the task. Most memorable of the supporting cast is Wilton who is charged with nursing the engines of their rather creaky craft. When told he has to stay on the ship rather than going aboard the target vessel, Wilton says: "Request permission to say, 'S--t' sir."
The fun is watching these men train for the mission; the suspense is watching them perform it. To a man, the whole Light Horse volunteered for the mission, despite knowing there was no pay, recognition, medals, or any form of compensation. With only one fatality, despite overwhelming odds and several casualties, they manage.
The only flaw of the film, for me, is Peck's British accent which is overdone when present and tends to fade in and out. Director Andrew McLaglen should have dispensed with it entirely. (MacLaglen also directed Moore in 'fflokes,' another offbeat role for The Saint whose name was Bond.)
Action, humour, romance, suspense - all based on a true story - this one has it all, including a title & credit sequences of the actual event.
Recently, we read Roger Moore's book "My Word is my Bond" and thanks to this excellent biography of all the work accomplished by Roger Moore, we became familiar with movies we had never seen by our favorite... Bond, James Bond. So, we are trying to see all his films.
In The Sea Wolves, Roger Moore stars with Gregory Peck, David Niven, Trevor Howard and Barbara Kellerman among many wonderful stars.
The plot revolves around retired British military men who now form part of "The Calcutta Light Horse," a club where they play games, drink, party, and reminisce about the days when they lived the action of war.
Goa, a Portuguese colony, is India's smallest state in terms of area and the fourth smallest in population. Located on the west coast of India, it is located in the region known as the Konkan. To the north we find Maharashtra, to the east and south Karnataka and to the west, the Arabian Sea. In his book, Roger Moore tells us that the film took place close to Christmas and they wanted to have a meal as they did back home, with turkey, stuffing, Christmas pudding and all the trimmings, so they set out to recreate an English meal in Goa... to no avail.
This film is based on a true story. In 1943, German merchant ships used to gather information and sink Allied war vessels. Two British officers, masterfully played by Roger Moore and Gregory Peck are sent to Goa to search for clues as to how the information is relayed and to put a stop to the casualties. Roger Moore meets a woman and falls in love with her without realizing that she is dangerous to say the least.
The design a plan to sink the German ships and they turn for help to the retired military men of The Calcutta Light Horse Club. These men can't wait to get into action and it is quite fun to see the preparation they undergo to get back in shape. Patrick Macnee of the series "The Avengers" is part of the team. At first we did not recognize him because he was missing his John Steed umbrella and hat, but the voice gave him away.
As the movie progresses, the men learn that their mission entails destroying German ships and it is quite fun to see how delighted they are to get back into action after over 40 years of rest.
Thanks to Roger Moore's book, we also learn lots about the close relationship the actor had with both Gregory Peck and David Niven and how Niven discovers that he suffered from motor neurone disease because while he walked his daily routine, he could not lift his heel off the ground.
The film is based on a great story and on real facts, the action is superb and the plot, interesting and filled with humor.
on August 13, 2014
This wonderful, nostalgic, baby-boomer film showed thoughtful, excellent character development throughout! The picture appeared digitally remastered on my excellent Vizio 1080p 42" screen. The many wonderful European, predominantly British character actors, were a pleasure to watch:
Trevor Howard has no acting peer in terms of "Gravitas." Patrick Macnee, as usual, brings a mirthful smile to both the screen and our faces as we watch. Roger Moore is his usual classy, smooth as velvety-voiced Saintly-Bondish self. Kenneth Griffith causes his usual stressful anxiety in the viewer as the engine specialist, as he did so well as the priest in "the Englishman who went up a hill, but came down a mountain."
Other notable performances are the obvious heart-felt warmth of the two great stars, David Niven and the incomparable Gregory Peck. You care deeply about their characters.
Baddies include a young Wolf Kahler who will go on to star as the evil soldier in "Raiders of the Lost Ark."
The physically-imposing Jack Watson, who was a real-life physical training instructor in the Royal Navy, is great to see, reminding me of Brit TV appearances on The Avengers and All Creatures Great And Small.
Overall, a five star picture quality with many five star character and elite performances...highly recommended for the over-fifty crowd who can recognize high-class entertainment/productions.
on October 13, 2014
Based on a true story about two British intelligence officers who stop the flow of information about allied convoys and their cargos getting to a German submarine operating in the Indian Ocean during WWII. These officers (whose photos are at the end of the movie) are played by Gregory Peck and Roger Moore. David Niven is the commanding officer of a Territorial Unit which last saw action during the Boer War. Although the men are too old for regular military service, Niven's men are all that are available when British intelligence makes its move. This movie was subtitled The Last Charge of the Calcutta Light Horse. It's an interesting, sometimes humorous, look at the struggle of the British Empire in WWII. A good war movie in a corner of the war not usually covered. .
on January 14, 2012
This movie is a classic. Gregory Peck, David Nivon and Roger Moore play wonderful roles. The movie is based on the true story of the members of the Horse Brigade. They were in the Boar War which was 1900. Gregory Peck and Roger Moore are approached by David Nivon. These men are more then willing to help in winning the war with Germany during the 1940's. I'm almost betting this was one of David Nivon's last movie, you can tell he's aged in this movie. If you want some history on WWII and how men who were past the age of fighting fought for the greater good for the world. Great Movie--I highly recommend it.
on February 24, 2014
I thought this movie was great. It is based on a true story of how a bunch of old guys, retired army and navy worked together to take out a Nazi radio ship. you can't go wrong with Gregory Peck, David Niven, Roger Moore, and Patrick Macnee. The action is great and the story is well paced. I found the movie very enjoyable well done. This is what heroism is really about, a bunch of old guys who still want to serve their country and succeed. They would not have made the movie if they failed.
on September 12, 2015
Great movie which is based on a true story. Love it, because it has "actors" instead of movie stars in it. Realistic, and very well done. If you like World War II movies, then don't let this one past you
on February 10, 2009
The film opens with incredibly accurate information that Forty-six freighters were sunk by the German submarines in the Indian Ocean in the past few weeks... The U-boats know exactly where and when to strike...
On one hand, we also know that the Portuguese authorities dismantled the ships' radios when they gave them permission to stay there... On the other, if Radio Monitoring is right, and the transmitter is actually in the harbor, it must be on a ship...
Not being able to break the code, the British Intelligence has to find out from where the information to those U-boats originates... To find whoever heads the spy ring, and to get rid of the transmitter without forgetting to violate Portugal's neutrality...
Now if a British Commando cannot violate Goa's neutral status, they might have to turn to amateurs... The Light Horse has not been in action as a unit since the Boer War in 1900... If they were caught, it might be taken as a drunken escapade... We are speaking about ex-soldiers on holiday, stealing a river ferry, sailing it the whole way round India from Calcutta to Cochin... and then heading for the neutral port of Mormugoa, Portuguese colony...
In that port, at anchor is a German ship, the Ehrenfels... Their job is to seize that ship, or sink her where she is... Also in that port are two other German ships so if they can knock them off at the same time, so much the better...
As you can see it is a crucial operation where many allied lives might be saved...
David Niven is the only man with any experience at sea...Charlie Wilton will remain aboard to nurse the engine of the old tub... Trevor Howard will have his only chance to settle accounts for his boy killed in Burma... Roger Moore has to deal with some spies... Peck has to lead the whole suicide adventure...
The film moves along beautifully, reaching an exciting and tense climax... Don't miss it!