Flynn's star-making swashbuckler is right on target. Based on the novel by Rafael Sabatini, CAPTAIN BLOOD concerns the adventures of a young Brit surgeon who turns buccaneer after unjust persecution. The film had been originally earmarked for Robert Donat whose recurrent asthma convinced
Jack Warner to gamble on Flynn. The unknown de Havilland also scored as love interest, and despite a tight budget, Curtiz contributed a lush production. Highlight is the trademark duel between Flynn and Rathbone.
Mindful that his two novice stars might bomb, wily Jack Warner decided not to build full-scale sailing ships for the many action scenes. To represent the bombardments, ...