Saturday, November 1, 2008

Pirates of Tripoli

This movie was on TCM this afternoon. It is a pirate movie about a different group than normally shown - the corsairs of the Mediterranean. The real pirates of Tripoli were some of the most powerful pirates in history. They raided Europe for slaves, even England. By the early 19th century they had arrangements with most countries who paid tribute to the corsairs to keep their shipping safe. The fledgling US decided that the tribute was too expensive and sent in the Marines to clear out the pirates (twice). This is where the "Shores of Tripoli" line in the Marine hymn comes from.

You don't get any of that in the movie. It's pretty formulaic. A deposed princess goes to the pirates, looking for help in recovering her kingdom. She and the chief pirate are attracted to each other very quickly, and after some setbacks, the triumph.

Despite the corsairs being Muslems, the cast looks like any other pirate movie (the star, Paul Henreid was in other pirate movies). The ships are obviously models.

Still, it is entertaining. It isn't worth renting but it is worth changing the channel for when it is on.

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