“An Informal, Nonhomey, So-What Sort of a Picture”:
The Captain Hates the Sea This Wednesday!

The Portage Theater – 4050 N. Milwaukee Ave – 7:30 – $5.00 per ticket
For the full schedule of classic film screenings at the Portage, please click here.

May 23
Directed by Lewis Milestone • 1934
Bookended by newspaperman and would-be novelist John Gilbert leaving his girlfriend to get on the San Capador to escape Hollywood and falling back into her arms in New York, the ocean voyage in between coasts is what dreams are made of. The film stars a bond thief (Fred Keating), a detective (Victor McLaglen) who falls for the Keating’s girlfriend (Helen Vinson), the ship’s steward (Leon Errol), an ex-prostitute (Wynne Gibson), an ex-prostitute’s husband (John Wray), The Three Stooges, and the titular Captain (Walter Connolly), a host of others, and somehow it all works. High production costs and – despite an insanely good cast – a lack of big name stars led to a limp-wristed Heaven’s Gate style release from Columbia, and the picture was all but forgotten. But per Otis Ferguson, who championed the film for his entire career, The Captain Hates the Sea was “the best neglected picture in two years … not only a departure from the safe cycles but a picture without a plot, an informal, nonhomey, so-what sort of a picture. Sadder.” The film has been crying for reevaluation ever since. (JA)
93 min • Columbia Pictures • 35mm from Sony Pictures Repertory
Short: Betty Boop in “S.O.S.” (Dave Fleischer, 1932) – 16mm – 7 min

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