DirectorLloyd Bacon Music directorWilliam Axt LanguageEnglish
WriterJ. Grubb Alexander, Herman Melville, Oliver H.P. Garrett Release dateSeptember 30, 1930 (1930-09-30) ScreenplayOliver H.P. Garrett, J. Grubb Alexander CastJohn Barrymore (Ahab), Joan Bennett (Faith), Lloyd Hughes (Derek), Noble Johnson (Queequeg), Nigel De Brulier (Elijah (as Nigel de Brulier)), Walter Long (Stubbs) Similar moviesPirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Free Willy 2 - The Adventure Home, Blackfish, Free Willy 3: The Rescue, Orca: The Killer Whale
TaglineThar she blows!
Moby dick 1926 the lost print
Herman Melvilles mad Capt. Ahab (John Barrymore) spends years hunting the white whale that got his leg.
Moby Dick is a 1930 all-talking film made by Warner Bros., directed by Lloyd Bacon, and starring John Barrymore and Joan Bennett. The film is a sound remake of the 1926 silent movie, The Sea Beast, which also starred Barrymore.
Herman Melville's mad Capt. Ahab (John Barrymore) spends years hunting the white whale that got his leg.
The film tells of a sea captains maniacal quest for revenge on a great white whale who has bitten off his leg. Barrymore, as Ahab, meet and falls in love with Joan Bennett, daughter of the local minister, after disembarking in New Bedford. Bennett quickly falls in love with Barrymore and is heartbroken when he leaves on another voyage. During his next voyage, Barrymore loses his leg to a large white whale. When he returns to New Bedford, he mistakenly believes that Bennett no longer wants to see him because of his disfigurement. He vows revenge against the whale, and to kill it or be killed in the process, and returns to sea.
Differences from novel
The film, just as The Sea Beast (the previous 1926 silent version) was, is an extremely free adaptation of the novel Moby-Dick by Herman Melville. It implements a prequel and sequel element to the story that did not exist in Melvilles novel. As an example of the changes found in the film, Captain Ahab is portrayed as a handsome romantic hero with a pretty girlfriend, but his evil brother manipulates the situation so that she will reject him. He also has both of his legs until he embarks on the voyage in which Moby Dick bites off one of them and he becomes consumed with revenge and embarks on the odyssey to kill the whale that maimed him. Ultimately, Ahab survives the ordeal, kills his stowaway brother (as well as Moby Dick), and returns home to the woman who loves him.
John Barrymore as Captain Ahab Ceely
Joan Bennett as Faith Mapple
Lloyd Hughes as Derek Ceely
Noble Johnson as Queequeg
Nigel De Brulier as Elijah
Walter Long as Mr Stubbs
May Boley as Whale Oil Rosie
Tom OBrien as Starbuck
Virginia Sale as First Old Maid
John Ince as Reverend Mapple
Foreign Language Versions
One Foreign Language Version of the 1930 version of Moby Dick was produced. The German version was titled Damon des Meeres and was directed by Michael Curtiz.
The film survives intact and has been broadcast on television and cable but has yet to see a Warner Archive DVD-on-demand availability.