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Film / Sailor of the King

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A 1953 War Movie based on the C.S. Forester short story Brown on Resolution. A young naval officer named Richard Savile (Michael Rennie) enjoys a romantic interlude with pretty Lucinda Bentley (Wendy Hiller) before going off to World War I, but the girl refuses his offer of marriage. Years later, still unmarried, Richard is captain of a cruiser squadron during World War II. His command tangles with a German raider, which Savile eventually succeeds in sinking, thanks to the one-man delaying action of a young Canadian sailor named Brown (Jeffrey Hunter).


Much later, back in England the two men are waiting for their decorations from the king, and Savile asks why 'Canada' Brown is serving in the Royal Navy. The young sailor credits his mother, an English girl, who is a huge fan of the Royal Navy and raised him as the same. Brown further remarks that his mother is in Montreal and so couldn't make the ceremony. Savile tells him that their next posting is to the North Atlantic, making a visit to his mum possible. Nothing is said, but it is safe to assume that Richard and young Brown are in for a shock and Lucinda is going to have some explaining to do.


Tropes in this film:

  • Heroic Bastard: Brown.
  • Honor Before Reason: Lucinda is trying to do the right thing but she succeeds in messing up her own life and Richard's and arguably their son's. None of them can be said to be 'ruined' but they are all less happy than they could have been.
  • Honorable Marriage Proposal: Richard makes one of these to Lucinda but she turns him down (see below).
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Lucinda refuses Richard's offer of marriage because she thinks it's forced by convention. She hides her pregnancy for the same reason. The fact that Richard is still unmarried two decades later suggests she was wrong.
  • My Secret Pregnancy: Lucinda moves to Canada to hide hers.
  • New Child Left Behind
  • Very much a case Turn Out Like His Father but unlike most examples Lucinda seems to have done everything in her power to make it so.
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  • What the Hell, Hero?: What the hell Lucinda?


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