Author Topic: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)  (Read 8595 times)

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Offline luzparis

The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« on: Oct 27, 2009, 11:00 PM »
When the cinema used a famous liner for a drama

i remenber, i was kid when i saw this movie I was surprise and very excited by the story !! some years after i remenber this movie , i remenber the name " LAST VOYAGE" this story was made on board of the famous liner " ILE de FRANCE" remaned SS CLARIDON for the story every scene has made on board ( the ile de france was sold for scrap and the productor use the ship and decide to sunk her for the movie )

look this  trailer  of the "LAST VOYAGE"

 ;D

« Last Edit: Jan 11, 2010, 11:24 PM by Rob Lightbody »

Offline Jeff Taylor

Re: When the cinema used a famous liner for a drama
« Reply #1 on: Oct 27, 2009, 11:42 PM »
Sinatra made a turkey of a film titled "Assault on a Queen" where bunch of guys supposedly resurrected a WW2 German sub and held up the Queen Mary--tough movie to watch for the few minutes showing the Queen even for a Sinatra fan.  One of my favorites would be Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr on the Constitution.  You know the title.

Offline pete cain

Re: When the cinema used a famous liner for a drama
« Reply #2 on: Oct 29, 2009, 07:29 PM »
I remember distinctly watching 'The Last Voyage ' at my local cinema (when we had one), truly, that film was to me at least ; one of those milestone moments in life , on the upper circle with about 4 other people, in the dark & that big screen, and that big big real ship sinking, water rushing up the prommenade deck, b****y hell to a young teenager that was some film, no computer generated images in them days, fantastic,( I think I liked it).

Online Peter Mugridge

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Re: When the cinema used a famous liner for a drama
« Reply #3 on: Dec 02, 2009, 11:38 PM »
The Ile de France was sunk in shallow water for the filming, then refloated and towed to the scrapyard.

Apparently the shipping line had no idea this was going to happen and was - to put it mildly - very unhappy when they found out afterwards.  The way I heard it was that they subsequently put clauses into all their sale contracts to ensure nothing like it could happen again.




Now... is The Last Voyage available on DVD?  It's many years since I last saw it.
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Offline Mauretania1907

Re: When the cinema used a famous liner for a drama
« Reply #4 on: Dec 12, 2009, 08:51 AM »
Words fail me, IS the film available. . NO WONDER the French went ape-sh*t over this, the Ile de France was loved by many and had a huge following on the North Atlantic. Good grief, they must have spewed when they saw this film, and I can tell you, the fate of the Ile is the main reason for some strange clauses in scrapping deals now. (The Canberra comes to mind here)

Online Peter Mugridge

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Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #5 on: Jan 14, 2010, 12:29 PM »
"Strange clauses" - sounds interesting; does that mean there are some little known clauses in subsequent contracts in addition to the well known ones banning use of the vessels for filming?

As for the film, I've been nosing around the internet, it is on DVD but appears to be available for Region 1 ( USA )only, release date 24th October 2006.  I wonder if the French blocked a Region 2 ( Europe ) release?
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richc1977

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Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #6 on: Jan 14, 2010, 01:18 PM »
I've got this on Region 1 DVD as my DVD is region free and it is well worth getting.  My comment won't spoil it for you as the trailer gives much of it away.

I don't think there is a studio shot in any of the film, it seems all to have been filmed on board or "at sea".

The first part is great because you get to see the ship as she was, in glorious colour, so you see some of her lovely interiors.

Then they let the pyrotechnics off.........amidst all the destruction you can still appreciate what a beautiful ship she was.  Despite the fires, explosion and sending the forward funnel crashing through the superstructure.

My understanding is that the French sold her for scrap, then the scrappers hired her out to the film company.  The French Line went to court to stop them using their colours on the funnel, hence the logos adorning her funnels in the film.

They didn't sink her, but they flooded her double bottom and the forward compartment, in the film and trailer you can see they actually flooded the compartment and caused the bulkhead to go, which is one of the most awesome things I've seen in a film because you can actually see they did it for real.  In the exterior shots you can see they got the stern out of the water to give her a sufficient list.

There is a section in the film where they are in the flooding first class dining saloon, clearly a few decks up.  So they used fire tugs to direct water jets through open portholes.  I think Robert Stack falls over at one point which might not have been in the script.

The sadness is the fire and water damage to her interiors and a pity they didn't end up in a museum.  The saving grace is a record of her interiors in colour on film.

Online Peter Mugridge

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Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #7 on: Jan 14, 2010, 01:36 PM »
It's OK, I saw the film on TV a couple of times in the early 1970s, so I do know the plot.

While searching round the web, I came across the hire fee the film company paid the scrap merchants; it was US$1,500,000.
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Offline Stowaway2k

Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #8 on: Jan 14, 2010, 08:01 PM »
LIFE magazine did a profile article on the filming of "The Last Voyage"
That, and the book "Ile de France a Biography" give some wonderful insight into behind the scenes of "The Last Voyage".

CGT, or The French Line didn't go to court over the use of Ile de France in the film, what did happen was even a better story.   A French company suing an American company over the use of property that wasn't even theirs, in a third country... well that lawsuit would go nowhere.  What happened was the French government let be known that should the vessel be identified in any way as Ile de France or a French Line vessel, there was the possibility of an injunction against MGM films being distributed in France.   This of course would have been financially very serious for MGM, they had no choice but to play ball and comply.   So, the producers rid the ship of anything French Line and named her OLYMPUS.   When the Greek Line learned of this, they made the same threat as France.   Thus, "S.S. Claridon"

The engine room bulkhead was fake, installed for the film,  but it was in the real engine room. 

There were other bits of Hollywood hocus-pocus, for instance the long shots of the ship sinking.  In reality she only went down about 12 feet at the bow, as that is all the 9000 tons of water pumped in would do.  The long shot of the bows going under and the screws lifting up out of the water was a matte shot, sort of a cut-and-paste early cinema technique.

The final scene of the actors racing along the upper deck of the sinking ship were done on a set, probably in one of the MGM tanks.  Looking carefully you can see the wood set walls flexing, bowing and giving in to the weight of the rushing water.

The scenes of the wrecked stateroom, slowly going under, were filmed in the ship's swimming pool.  The set was built in the empty pool, and then water was pumped in to give the impression of sinking.

The backstory of the producers dealiing with the ship's (Firanzu Maru, Japanese for "French Ship") is a good story.  As it turned out, the scrapyard owners who purchased Ile de France were little more than organized crime.   Throughout production the continually, and without notice, changed the terms of the contract.  Demanding more and more money, they turned to bribery, holding film equipment for ransom, and locking production off the ship. 

A fun bit of trivia is that in the scene of the large explosion tearing up through the lounge deck, the "female" passengers were US Marines in drag.  They were the only ones the producers could get to appear for that scene.

Online Peter Mugridge

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Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #9 on: Jan 14, 2010, 11:14 PM »
Thank you; that is all stuff I hadn't heard before and it is very interesting.
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Offline Stowaway2k

Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #10 on: Jan 15, 2010, 12:18 PM »
The people of France had good reason to mourn their loss of S.S. Ile de France.
She was a highly celebrated and successful liner from the start, 1927.  The first Atlantic liner to move away from the pack of period-decorated interiors, she caused a sensation and became a trend-setter with her gorgeous art-deco interiors.
In WW2 she became a sort of symbol of the Resistance, coming close to being scuttled.
Post WW2 she was a tired old gal, but instead of being rid of her then, she was reborn, completely refitted and was practically a brand new ship, even losing one of her funnels.
In 1956 she made headlines around the world when she diverted from her eastbound crossing, turning back to save hundreds of lives from the sinking Andrea Doria.  Even before she returned to New York to land the survivors, she was a hero ship, her captain and crew celebrities.

From her final film appearance to possibly her first, board Ile de France again, this time in 1927.  See her in all her original glory in this silent film promoting the French Line and travel to France

part une
http://tinyurl.com/yfl3zdf
part deux
http://tinyurl.com/ygxzo3o
part trois
http://tinyurl.com/ykoalcu

all together about one hour long.   In part two see very rare film footage of French Line's early attempt to speed up the transatlantic mail by catapulting a biplane from her bow.  This was done about a day out from port.  You can skip past the travelogue parts to the ship parts   ;)


richc1977

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Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #11 on: Jan 16, 2010, 01:58 PM »
I just had a lazy morning in bed (I've been ill) watching the Last Voyage again on DVD.

The interiors of the Ile De France were really beautiful, the panelling was very nice - from the stairways to the captain's cabin, but I noticed especially the lighting and light fixtures.  There were also a lot of murals on the walls, and the iron work on the staircases was exquisite.

It seems almost disrespectful what they did to her to make that film, but then I guess ripping her apart in a scrapyard is much the same.

Offline luzparis

Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #12 on: Jan 19, 2010, 09:28 PM »
But take care some panels are removed when thé ship was
sold and changed with new fake panels because ile de France after the war uses some Normandie Dunand panels and yhis panels are in stock of french museum
« Last Edit: Jan 19, 2010, 10:17 PM by luzparis »

Online Peter Mugridge

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Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #13 on: Apr 19, 2010, 05:22 PM »
Still can't find it on DVD though...
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LegendOfTheSeas

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Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #14 on: Apr 19, 2010, 06:31 PM »
I have found it on Amazon but, unfortunately it is only Region 1 (USA and Canada): http://www.amazon.co.uk/Last-Voyage-DVD-Region-NTSC/dp/B000HEWEF8/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=dvd&qid=1271698050&sr=1-1

My laptop plays Region 1 DVDs, but I don't know about other computers although I know that European DVD players won't play them.

I digress, but what is the point of having DVDs split into regions? It's annoying and inconvenient when you can't get a certain DVD for your own region, yet the only one available is for another region entirely.

Online Peter Mugridge

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Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #15 on: Apr 19, 2010, 11:47 PM »
That's precisely the problem I have; dozens of Region 1 copies available, but none for Region 2.

I e-mailed Warners asking about that, but they didn't have the manners to reply.
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RmsAquitania

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Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #16 on: Apr 20, 2010, 10:43 PM »
I bought a multi region dvd player from argos about 2 years ago for £30 and its never let me down. Also saw one in gib last year for £25.

Offline Jeff Taylor

Re: The Last Voyage movie (Ile De France)
« Reply #17 on: Mar 30, 2011, 05:55 PM »
I have two "liteon" dvd recorder/players I bought off ebay (european or UK models may have a different trade name, but should be the same Chinese innards).  They are out of production now but used prom chips in their circuitboards which are routinely reprogrammed by sellers not only for multi-regions, but also to ignore any copy protection on professional dvd's.  They can remove it when you record to another machine, or remove it when you play a copy-protected dvd to the liteon for recording.  They are on ebay all the time in the US under variations on the "magic dvd" moniker, and do have a switching power supply, so should work in the UK or europe fine with the proper cord and plug.  They're handy for altering regions or copying rare dvd's.  Not sure it would be worth the postage if you're not in the US, but if someone is stuck and needs one "region-altered" I'd be glad to help.

 

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