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The Adventures of Errol Flynn (2005)

A documentary about the life of Errol Flynn, with recollections from friends and family.

Director:

David Heeley
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ian Holm ... Narrator (voice)
Errol Flynn ... Himself / Various Roles (archive footage) (archive sound)
Charles Chauvel Charles Chauvel ... Himself - Producer and Director (archive footage)
Patrice Wymore ... Herself - Widow of Errol Flynn (as Patrice Wymore Flynn)
Vincent Sherman ... Himself - Director
Burt Reynolds ... Himself - Actor
Rudy Behlmer ... Himself - Author and Film Historian
Olivia de Havilland ... Herself - Actress
Richard Dreyfuss ... Himself - Actor
Delmer Daves ... Himself - Writer and Director (archive footage)
David Niven ... Himself - Actor (archive footage)
Joanne Woodward ... Herself - Actress
Deirdre Flynn Deirdre Flynn ... Herself - Daughter
Richard Schickel ... Himself - Author and Time Film Critic
Basil Rathbone ... Himself / Various Roles (archive footage) (archive sound)
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Storyline

Documentary about action-adventure movie star Errol Flynn. Flynn's early life was something out of an adventure novel. He lived in the South Seas, undertook major sailing expeditions and dabbled in a variety of business ventures. His first stab at acting was In the Wake of the Bounty (1933), an Australian made film where, he admitted, he didn't have a clue what he was doing. He did repertory theater work in England for a time and eventually ended up under contract at Warner Bros. studios in Hollywood. Jack Warner personally selected him for the lead role in Captain Blood (1935) which led to instant stardom. Similar roles, especially in The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) made him the top action/adventure hero of his day. His career hit a major bump in the road when he was charged with statutory rape in 1943. He was found not guilty and there is a consensus that he was set up. His career began to decline by the late 1940s and in 1953, his contract with Warners came to an end. He ... Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

REAL-TO-REEL: A Hollywood Legend's Life of Action, Romance and Drama. (DVD)

Genres:

Documentary

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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 April 2005 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Oi peripeteies tou Errol Flynn See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Connections

Features That Forsyte Woman (1949) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Good documentary on a colorful actor
6 October 2007 | by blanche-2See all my reviews

Errol Flynn has always been grist for story mills - his off-screen life was as outrageous as his on-screen antics, so it's no surprise that a documentary about him appears from time to time on Turner Classic Movies, which owns the Warner Brothers Library.

What made this Flynn story particularly interesting was the input from the family, ex-wives Patrice Wymore and Nora Eddington, and daughter Rory. They described him as a robe and slippers man who loved his home. That may come as a surprise to some people, but you can't booze and womanize 24/7, and it's clear from photographs that he loved his three children. The documentary fails to mention the death of Sean Flynn, probably because it happened after his father's death.

The other element that puts this biography one step above is the interview with Olivia de Havilland, who speaks quite frankly about the attraction she and Flynn had for one another and how the romance was never to be. de Havilland's affection for Flynn, spoken of so emotionally when she was in the U.S. to receive an award at the time of her 90th birthday, is an indication that there was more to Flynn than young girls, drugs, and liquor. The classy de Havilland obviously saw something special in him, beyond the physical.

The film clips from Robin Hood, Captain Blood and Flynn's other films are fun to watch. He was unique in that while other actors did musicals, dramas, comedies and adventure films, Flynn primarily did adventure films throughout his career. He was a tremendous natural athlete with great flair and charm, born to play the Robin Hoods and Captain Bloods. He could have been excellent in comedy, but his attempt didn't catch on. The problem for Flynn was that while others at Warners could act the big roles and play comedy as well as Flynn, no one at Warners was as adept at playing swashbucklers. This frustrated him, as a similar situation frustrated Tyrone Power at Fox, though Power had many more opportunities to do different types of films than did Flynn.

The wonderful thing about this documentary is it debunks Charles Higham's Nazi premise (which had already been debunked) and, as one poster mentioned already, the homosexuality/bisexuality assertion is ridiculous. Flynn's big problem was underage girls. It's certainly possible that he experimented with the opposite sex under the influence - probably everybody did! Why this is considered noteworthy is anybody's guess.

Flynn was embarking on a career as a character actor at his death, and again, like Tyrone Power, he would have been happy with the meatier roles that supporting roles offer. Neither man lived to fulfill that potential. Flynn had a particular heartbreak in a film version of William Tell that was never finished and IRS problems. The end of his life was a sad one for someone with so much charm, beauty and humor.


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