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The Long Ships (1964)

A British/Yugoslavian film, which wasn't one of Sidney Poitier's favourites: "To say it was disastrous is a compliment."

I disagree. Based on Frans T. Bengtsson's novel, 'The Long Ships' has Richard Widmark as a charismatic, courageous Viking leading his men in search of a giant, golden bell. Poitier plays a sadistic Moorish prince, who lays on a grisly demonstration to show how devoted his men are, when one unfortunate (though uncredited, it's Leonard Rossiter playing a small part!) is plucked from the ranks, and encouraged to be cut in half on the mare of steel, which he offers to do - knowing if he refused, something worse would befall him!

'The Long Ships' doesn't pale too much in comparison with the earlier 'The Vikings'. It's a lively film, with good performances and a good cast, which also includes Russ Tamblyn and Colin Blakely. Good music from Dusan Radic.

- Paul Rance/

Main Cast List (actors/actresses listed first)

Richard Widmark as Rolfe
Sidney Poitier as Aly Mansuh
Russ Tamblyn as Orm
Rosanna Schiaffino as Aminah
Oskar Homolka as Krok
Edward Judd as Sven
Lionel Jeffries as Aziz
Beba Loncar as Gerda
Clifford Evans as King Harald
Gordon Jackson as Vahlin
Colin Blakely as Rhykka
David Lodge as Olla
Henry Oscar as Auctioneer
Paul Stassino as Raschild
Jeanne Moody as Ylva

Directed by
Jack Cardiff

Produced by
Irving Allen (producer)
Denis O'Dell (associate producer)

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