Theme Song: Actually has a pretty nice Theremin-laced soundtrack by Jeff Wayne that I didn’t bother to record or look for.
Interesting Dated References: Burgess Meredith.
Best Line: Woman — “You know you drink too much?” Man — “Whatever gets you through the day.”
Social Context: The social context is that the world used to have a lot more wooden paneling, even on cruise ships. Oh, and when there was more wood paneling, people did more espionage-related shit. Now everything is just pastel and no one gives a shit about espionage, counter-, or otherwise.
Summary: I’m not gonna pretend to know about espionage or counter-espionage books or any of that shit. So telling me a movie is based on a book by Alistair MacLean means dick to me. Look, we can’t be experts on everything. MacLean wrote The Guns of Navarone, Where Eagles Dare, Ice Station Zebra, and other books/movies your grandpa would care about. Golden Rendezvous is also based on a MacLean book, and it seems to be the consensus it’s a very shitty adaptation at that.
The film opens with usually soused Richard Harris playing some type of elitist cruise ship captain. Lots of suspicious is going on, but nothing much of it is very intriguing. It’s just a bunch of semi-tense music and chitchat. Eventually, and luckily, someone on the crew dies! Everyone stays calm, but they do suspect foul play so they play a game of whodunit. They implicate a few passengers, but in the meantime another crewmember falls overboard and dies. Then a bunch more people die.
Suddenly, terrorist invade the ship and kill passengers. They injure Richard Harris. He plays lame and gets to go to the hospital room. While there he sneaks out, realizes terrorists had been stowed away in the cargo room, and discovers a nuclear device on board. These terrorists plan to use this nuclear device to hijack another ship carrying gold bullion. They eventually align themselves with the ship, send over all the passengers and the bomb, then take all the gold back onto the cruise ship. Richard Harris manages to save the day with his stealthy black turtleneck. It really doesn’t help Harris looks like your grandpa with a blonde Beatles wig on throughout the entire movie. So yeah, the ship with all the gold on it blows up, and all the passengers just sit and watch from the safe ship. I’m assuming it wasn’t the nuclear bomb blowing up since the explosion was pretty standard and all the people just stand there like they’re watching the fucking fireworks instead of being exposed to radiation.
Poster and Box Art The Beta box for this is shitty. In fact I think it was done in chalk. No one past high school should be using fucking chalk to make art. I did find this:
An awesome Belgian version of the poster that makes the movie look totally fucking awesome. The movie is not awesome, but this poster is. Fuck look at that thing, it makes it look so good.
Availability: Some used VHS on Amazon.