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The Sea Wolf(1941)

After the success of Michael Curtiz’s The Sea Hawk (1940), Warner Bros. was inspired to make the fifth adaptation of Jack London’s classic adventure. After hiring future director Robert Rossen to write the script, they created a memorable study of a dictatorship, with Edward G. Robinson’s unscrupulous, sadistic captain Wolf Larsen sharing similarities with Hitler and Mussolini. He meets his match in a trio of stars: rebellious mate John Garfield, escaped convict Ida Lupino and shipwrecked writer, Canadian-born actor Alexander Knox (in his U.S. film debut). Their battles on the fog-shrouded seas — directed by Michael Curtiz, shot by Sol Polito and scored by Erich Wolfgang Korngold, all in the style of German Expressionism — were a critical and box office hit. In 1947, Warner Bros. decided to pair the film with The Sea Hawk as a double bill, which required cutting 14 minutes from the former to squeeze in more showings. The cuts were made to the original camera negative and thought lost forever. Fortunately, the Museum of Modern Art had a full-length 35mm nitrate print from which Warner Bros. created this restoration. (d. Michael Curtiz, 100m, Digital)

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