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The Sea Wolf (1993)

Jack London's brutal Wolf Larson brings a shipwrecked aristocrat and a con woman aboard his doomed ship, the Ghost.


Michael Anderson


Jack London (book), Andrew J. Fenady (teleplay)
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »


Cast overview, first billed only:
Charles Bronson ... Capt. Wolf Larsen
Catherine Mary Stewart ... Flaxen Brewster
Marc Singer ... Johnson
Len Cariou ... Dr. Picard
Clive Revill ... Thomas C. 'Cookie' Mugridge
Christopher Reeve ... Humphrey Van Weyden
Shane Kelly Shane Kelly ... Leach
Garry Chalk ... Chandler / First Mate
Tom McBeath ... Latimer
Stan Barrett Stan Barrett ... Ofty Ofty
Dee Jay Jackson ... Smoke
Eli Gabay Eli Gabay ... Dogbreath, Helmsman
Russell Roberts Russell Roberts ... French Frank (as Russell J. Roberts)
Bill Croft ... Donovan
John Novak ... Jameson Damisk
Learn more

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Writer Van Weyden has an accident with his boat and he plus one woman is saved by the boat Ghost. Everything seems to be normal, until the two find captain Wolf Larsen psychotic ... Written by Eemil Laine

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Adventure | Drama


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Did You Know?


Producer Andrew J. Fenady had also wanted to do a remake of "Wuthering Heights" with Charles Bronson in the 70s. Bronson would have been Heathcliff and it would have been set in the Old West. See more »


Dr. Picard: There's not much I can do.
Capt. Wolf Larsen: You could sober up.
Dr. Picard: I'm afraid she's not going to survive.
Capt. Wolf Larsen: You say that about all your patients.
See more »


Edited from The Sea Wolf (1941) See more »

User Reviews

Breath in that saltwater.
14 May 2010 | by lost-in-limboSee all my reviews

Coming in during the later years, this was another one to tick off from actor Charles Bronson's long-winding filmography. "The Sea Wolf" (which is based on the novel by Jack London and has quite a few film adaptations before it) is a very good made for television ocean adventure enterprise, which relies on the strong performances of Bronson and Christopher Reeve. It's their characters and a battle of wills between them not to give in that makes it quite interesting, but at the same time gripping with their chats on philosophy. There's admiration, but also detest. Reeve is credibly tuned in as wealthy gentleman Humphrey Van Weydan who finds himself at the mercy of the cold-blooded, madman captain Wolf Larsen, a hardy but complicated portrayal by Bronson. For Wolf its amusing watching Humps (his ship nickname) trying to adapt to the conditions… because he's out of his comfort zone… being civilised doesn't work and what it comes down to is primal instinct. The sea has no laws. Learn or die. Which Wolf believes Humps would soon turn to, because he likes to say I told so… but Humps remains determined not to give in too easily. Wolf is a tyrant as he seems to use everybody on board as pieces for his own enjoyment, which leads to treachery and his own demise.

Aristocrat Humphrey Van Weydan and Flaxen Brewster are survivors of a ferry shipwreck, which are plucked out of the ocean by Wolf Larsen, a skipper of a seal-hunting ship. Wolf won't turn back for land, despite the lady Flaxen not being in good shape. Humphrey learns that his stuck on a ship with a psychotic skipper, but tries his best to keep a level-head throughout the voyage.

Director Michael Anderson's ("Around the world in 80 days", "Logan's Run" and "Orca") compact handing suit's the film's low scale, where obvious set-pieces are constructed around its simple, but assured narrative. At times it looks cheap and stagy, but it's competently pulled off with moments of taut suspense and stinging acts of brutality. Andrew J. Fenady's teleplay adaptation bestows an enthralling literate script with well drawn up characters, fascinating viewpoints and psychological banter. Sometimes it got a little bogged down, during the growing affection between the characters Humphrey and Flaxen and the waterlogged conclusion is not as strong as it could've been. Still its well judge, and liked how it keeps a dark undertone to it… namely that of Bronson's tough, intimidating performance. The cast also features Catherine Mary Stewart, Marc Singer, Len Cariou and a perfectly weasel-turn by Clive Revill.

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Release Date:

18 April 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

O Lobo do Mar See more »

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