The Ghost Ship (1943) Movie Script

For luck.
Thank you, sir.
Being a sailor, you'll need luck.
A young sailor too.
I don't need eyes to tell me that.
Young seamen all want luck
when they're outward bound.
Only the old ones know
that there's nothing...
...but bad luck and bad blows at sea.
An officer too.
How'd you know?
I heard your suitcase go down.
A seaman would be having a soft bag.
Thank you, sir. Thank you, sir.
If it's the Altair you're boarding, sir...
...she's a bad ship.
You've got a blind man's tricks
for telling what men are like, but ships... can't tell about ships.
I'm the third officer.
Where can I find the captain?
This is another man
I can never know...
...because I cannot talk with him.
For I am a mute and cannot speak.
I am cut off from other men...
...but in my own silence...
...I can hear things they cannot hear...
...know things they can never know.
Okay, fellas, pull that cover over here.
- Mr. Merriam?
- Yes, sir.
I'm Captain Stone.
How do you do, sir?
I chose you, Merriam,
and I don't regret my choice.
- Thank you, sir.
- I looked up the records...
...of the training ship graduates.
You seemed the most likely man for me.
- You know why?
- No, sir.
Your history could have been
my own at your age.
An orphan.
Anxious to get somewhere.
- We'll get on, you and I.
- Thank you.
I like a good ship, a clean ship,
an obedient ship.
As third officer,
you'll have certain authority.
Use it well, and Altair
will be that kind of ship.
- I'll do everything I can.
- Fine.
Go to your quarters
and get ready for work.
All right, sir.
You've no right to kill that moth.
Its safety doesn't depend on you.
I'm sorry. I don't understand.
Never mind. I'll explain sometime.
We've a long voyage ahead of us.
You know, that's one of the nice things
about long voyages, time for talk...
...time for friendship.
- You'll find your cabin on the main deck.
- All right, sir.
- Oh, steward?
- Yes, sir.
My name is Merriam. I'm the new third.
Your quarters are right over here,
Mr. Merriam.
Thank you.
The berth isn't made up.
Sorry, sir. I haven't had a chance
since Mr. Lingard died.
He was the last third officer.
- He died in this berth?
- That's right, sir.
He had such convulsions,
he would have died on the floor...
...if he hadn't have been held
in the berth.
Somehow, it seemed more proper for him
to die there than on the floor, sir.
- What was the matter with him?
- I don't know, sir.
He didn't want to die.
He was always telling funny stories.
Well, make it up. Can you change
the blankets and the sheets?
- Yes, sir.
- Open the porthole there.
Soon as we're under way,
we'll get air here.
We'll be shoving off in an hour, sir.
On deck, you guys.
The captain wants a look at you.
Rise and shine for the Dunham Line
I don't mean one, I don't mean two
I mean the whole sweet bellboy crew
The skipper wants to look you over.
Get in there, tall one.
Hey, you, Scotty, can the music.
On deck. Come on, Scotty.
I ain't Scotch, Boats. I'm Greek.
It's only Greeks can play
these things good.
In home country,
we play it to the sheep.
You'll get all the sheep you want.
We're going south for a full cargo.
Sheep hides, mutton, tallow.
Why, we even bring back
the smell of the sheep.
We have a new crew, Mr. Merriam.
You and Mr. Bowns better
look them over.
Come on, Merriam.
Go ahead, Boats.
- Ausman, Jack.
- Here.
- Benson, William.
- Here.
- Carter, Claude.
- Present.
Pipe down, you guys.
- Corbin, John.
- Here.
I've shipped with this man before.
He's a good seaman, sir.
- Thank you, mister.
- Okay.
- Farnham, Ed.
- Here.
- Mikross, Peter.
- Here.
Lindstrom, Paulo.
Paulo Lindstrom.
The guy's a dummy.
Keep your eye on that man, Boats.
I don't want any trouble on this ship.
- McCall, Tom.
- Yeah.
- O'Connor, Jack.
- Present.
- Parker, Louis.
- Here, teacher.
Radd, William.
I'm Billy Radd from La Trinidad
Pipe down, you guys.
Jensen, George. George Jensen.
- Vaughn, Jim.
- Here.
- Waite, Leonard.
- Here.
Everybody here, sir, except Jensen.
Maybe in the fo'c's'le.
George was right behind me
when we came out of the fo'c's'le, sir.
George Jensen.
There he is.
Captain, I don't get any pulse.
I'm afraid the man's dead.
Most likely heart failure, Mr. Bowns.
He was an old man.
The man is dead.
With his death, the waters of the sea
are open to us...
...but there will be other deaths.
And the agony of dying...
...before we come to land again.
Log at zero, sir.
The log is set at zero, sir, 8:23.
Seems good to get going.
I heard one of the men
putting it another way.
I heard him say,
"The ship comes to life at sea."
I suppose that's the way
all sailors feel.
It's good for a sailor to go to sea.
It's even better for an officer.
It's a good feeling.
In San Pedro, I was just another captain.
At sea, I am the captain.
It's got to be coiled with the sun.
It's a law of the sea.
That ain't a law.
If you break a law, you get arrested.
If you milk a cow
the wrong way, she kicks.
If you coil a rope the wrong way,
it can't kick.
I believe in logic.
Aboard ship, you'd better believe
in the captain and forget logic.
You coil a line the wrong way once,
and you'll find out.
The captain's got more law at sea
than any man on land has got...
...even the king of Siam...
...or the president
of the United States.
Why, a captain can marry you.
Not me. I had a wife.
No, sir. I don't feel any different.
When I was on the training ship,
I was a cadet. Now I'm an officer.
- Somehow, I don't feel different.
- You should.
It's all the difference between
being a man and being a boy.
It's more than that.
It's the difference between
being a man and being an officer.
I know, but somehow,
I can't believe yet that I'm an officer.
I passed my examinations,
I'm qualified...
...but still I haven't that feeling
that you speak about.
- That feeling of authority.
- You'll learn it.
You'll even learn to take great joy in it.
- You seasick?
- I have never been seasick.
Papa rocked me in his arms
when I was baptized.
That's the way you keep a good Greek kid
from getting sick at sea.
- What's the matter with your belly, then?
- It hurts.
She's a beautiful ship, captain.
A beautiful ship for a first berth.
She's a beautiful ship to command.
Hiya, Tertius.
I'm Sparks.
- What did you call me?
- Tertius.
What's that mean?
You share Bill Shakespeare's lack
of knowledge. No Latin and less Greek.
Tertius, my ignorant friend, means "third,"
and you're the third officer.
I suppose it would be a big help
to give deck orders in Latin.
It's not much use on the radio either.
- Come on in.
- All right.
It's a relief to find
someone onboard I can talk to.
All I've been doing is saying,
"yes, sir," all morning.
- The captain?
- No, thanks.
Me, I take the captain
cum grano salis.
Remember, I'm like Shakespeare.
With a grain of salt.
I like the old man.
He seems a good skipper.
- I've sailed with him before.
- No, I mean it.
I like the way he talks.
The things he has to say.
I don't know. I just stick to my job here.
I don't mix with the officers.
But I'll be glad to teach you Latin
or take money away from you at cards.
All right. I'll look in on you
after my watch.
Okay, I gotcha.
One forty-two.
One forty-two, sir.
Everything gone well
on your watch, Mr. Merriam?
Everything's fine, sir.
But I think I'll have that hook secured
before I go below.
- We might run into a sea.
- That's fresh paint, Mr. Merriam.
A line will mar it.
- I like a neat ship.
- Yes, sir.
Want that hook made fast, mister?
Might be hard to do if it gets sloppy.
No, Boats. Not yet. Paint's too wet.
Lights are bright, sir.
Better turn in, Tom.
Get some sleep before your watch.
Haven't you deck officers
any regard for life and limb?
- Why, that's all right.
- All right?
Why, you fellows could kill a guy
with that. You better secure it.
It's freshly painted.
We don't want to mar the paint.
You'll mar somebody's skull
if you don't do something.
I'll speak to the captain.
- Excuse me, sir...
- lf you want to discuss...
...the hook with me, I've already
given my considered opinion... to the danger involved.
On the bridge. The hook.
Look out! Heads!
- Look out.
- John. John.
You men there, get in and get that hook.
Make fast this end.
I'll fasten it around the hook.
Lower away on that winch.
- I can't. The cable's fouled.
- Get out there and grab that hook.
Put a stopper on that hook, Mr. Merriam.
Well, back to the black hole of Calcutta.
What are you thinking about,
Mr. Merriam?
I think I can tell you.
You're thinking about the hook.
You've made up your mind
that I was negligent.
- That's about it, isn't it?
- Yes, sir, I was thinking that.
You have no right to think that,
you know.
- The responsibility is yours.
- Mine?
I don't see that, sir.
I warned you about the hook.
- I told you twice about it.
- Exactly.
That's what I referred to.
You almost forced me into a position
where I had to show my authority...
...even though it put me in the wrong.
- I didn't see it that way.
But granted I was wrong, sir,
I don't see how you risked...
...the lives of John and the other men.
- I have rights over their lives, Mr. Merriam.
Remember the first day
you came into my office?
- Only vaguely.
- I told you... had no right to kill that moth...
...because its safety
did not depend on you.
I have the right to do
what I want with the crew...
...because their safety
depends on me.
I stand ready any hour of the day
or night to give my life for their safety...
...and for the safety of this vessel.
And because I do, I have
certain rights of risk over them.
- Now do you understand?
- Yes, sir, I think I understand.
You must understand.
It's the first thing you have
to learn about authority.
This liniment should
have penetrated by now, Peter.
It's always worked like magic
on cows and horses.
And it's the only thing that ever cured
my old man's lumbago.
It's the liniment plus a kind of hypnotism
or something I got in my hands.
There. How is that?
You feel okay now, don't you?
It's the other side
where the pain is, Jim.
You mean to tell me you've just been
laying there letting me rub on this side...
...when it's there?
Mr. Merriam. I was working on him...
...but I just touched him there,
and he passed right out.
Has he ever complained
of pain here before?
Panama calling Altair.
Is the patient under anesthetic?
Altair to Panama. Patient is asleep,
breathing very heavily.
If the patient is completely anesthetized,
you may proceed.
Are you ready?
Altair to Panama. We are ready.
Panama to Altair.
Captain Stone will bring his right hand
to the point which we have already...
...established as the region
of the appendix.
Place the point of the scalpel
exactly on this spot.
Make the incision.
Incise to a depth of one-quarter inch.
Continue with the incision vertically,
4 inches.
Have you made the incision?
Panama to Altair,
have you made the incision?
Altair to Panama, wait a minute.
We're not ready yet.
Altair to Panama, we are ready.
Please repeat.
Make an incision a quarter
of an inch deep.
Four inches on the vertical line
already described.
Altair to Panama,
the incision has been made.
You're not doing so good
with that, Louie.
The Greek says you got
to be a Greek to play on it.
How do I know I ain't?
How do you know you ain't gonna catch
appendicitis from it?
I heard it's catching.
Wonder how they're getting on.
Me, I've got magnetic hands.
Healing hands.
Still I wouldn't want to be
in the captain's shoes.
It ain't easy.
Hello, Panama. Hello.
Government hospital, Panama.
Dr. Ostglow. Steamship Altair.
Radio operator speaking.
Altair, come in.
Hello, doctor...
...the patient is breathing normally,
heartbeat is good.
Thank you, Dr. Ostglow.
We will continue to follow
with instructions.
Compliments of Captain Stone,
thank you again. Altair signing off.
Tertius, well done. You're a gent.
And you'll be a scholar
if you hang around me.
- Give me a cigarette, will you?
- Sure.
He'll live, God willing.
And no thanks to the captain.
...let's not say anything about this.
- What do you mean?
I mean, let's not tell anyone
the captain didn't do the operation.
- You're crazy.
- But you know how it is.
Some guys don't like the sight of blood
and things like that.
Okay, if you want it that way.
But me...
...l'd like to hear the next conversation
you have with the captain.
One of those talks
he gives on authority.
- Can I see you for a moment?
- Yes, sir.
Mr. Merriam, I want
to thank you for yesterday.
That's all right, sir.
- I'd like to thank you and explain.
- You don't have to explain, sir.
There are a lot of people
squeamish about blood.
I'm not squeamish, Mr. Merriam.
I'm not afraid of anything but failure.
That's why I didn't go
through with the operation.
I'm a sea captain.
I know my profession.
But I'm not a doctor,
and I might have failed.
- You see that, don't you, Tom?
- Of course I do, sir.
I knew you'd see it.
Just as I knew the first time I saw you
that you were the man for me.
A man who'd think as I think.
I've not been disappointed.
Oh, hiya, Tertius.
You haven't said anything, Sparks...
...about my having performed
the operation, have you?
I just thought I'd remind you.
- Been talking with the captain again?
- Yeah.
- He's been talking about authority?
- That's right.
He made a lot of sense.
There's something in what he says.
Wasn't much sense
in what he did yesterday.
- He explained all that.
- Yeah, I'll bet.
He's a smooth man with the words,
the captain.
Now, wait a minute, Sparks.
You've got him all wrong.
He's the first older man
who's treated me like a friend...
...and that means something.
- Yeah, I know.
I can see your way of thinking.
You had a tough time when you
were a kid. Not much friendliness.
But, Tom...
...there's a friendliness that tries
to get you to thinking wrong.
But that's got nothing to do with me.
We're bound south. It's a long voyage,
and I have to tend radio.
If you guys want any more,
you can get it yourself.
Okay, Stew.
Boats, the captain's complaining
about the way the deck's being kept.
It ain't as spick-and-span as I'd like it.
We're shorthanded with Jensen dead
and the Greek in his berth.
The boy's taking turns
standing double watches.
Yeah. Can't help that.
The captain wants a clean ship.
Aye, aye, sir.
You're crazy.
Whoever heard of a captain putting
into port just because one man's dead...
...and one man's off-duty? I've been
to sea since I've been a boy.
I've never heard of anything like that.
That's because most sailors
don't know the law.
With the Greek sick, captain
should port to fill up the crew.
Why, you told me yourself
that the captain is the law at sea.
That's the way it used to be.
Now they got new laws, and they say
the captain's got to put into port... fill up his crew on a coastwise trip.
Never heard of it.
Why don't you tell all that
to the captain yourself?
- Who wants to bet I don't dare?
- I'll bet 1000 bucks.
You four-flushers wouldn't bet
10 real cents.
Put up or shut up.
So I felt it only proper to bring
this just complaint of the men... you in person, captain.
You know, there are captains
who might hold this against you, Louie.
Hey, in there, nearly finished?
I'll be there in a minute.
Okay, let her go.
All right. Let her go.
Hey, hold the chain.
The door's locked!
Hold the chain!
Stop it! Stop!
Start washing down.
I'll take a look at the locker.
What's wrong?
You'd better get a couple of men
down here and get that cleaned up.
- It's Louie.
- He was a troublemaker.
But he was a nice guy. Always kidding.
You're impressed.
Death is so absolute.
You looked into the chain locker,
no more Louie.
No more insolent remarks.
No more danger
to the discipline of the ship.
- You didn't like him.
- Of course I didn't like him.
He was a sea lawyer,
full of windy complaints...
...seasoned with bad comedy.
So you shut the hatch.
Shut the hatch?
- What do you mean, Mr. Merriam?
- The hatch was shut.
And I think it was locked.
You accuse me
of doing this out of spite...
...because the man was insubordinate?
This is what you meant when you said
you had rights over the lives of the crew.
- You murdered him.
- You're a little hasty, Mr. Merriam.
You can't expect me just to stand by
and watch you kill a man.
What do you propose to do?
Denounce me?
May I speak to you, Mr. Bowns,
on a matter of great importance?
What is it?
What is the law about
an incompetent captain, Mr. Bowns?
Why interrupt me with a question
like that when you see I'm working?
You know the answer.
The first officer would take over.
I think the captain is incompetent.
Louie getting killed in the chain locker,
that wasn't an accident.
The captain did it purposely.
I don't know what you're trying
to pull, fella.
But my advice is, pull in your ears before
you get yourself into a jam you don't like.
Now get away from me. I'm busy.
- But, Mr. Bowns, I'm not joking.
- You heard me.
And I'm the first officer.
- Hey, what's wrong, kid?
- The captain's crazy, Sparks.
Sure the captain's crazy.
Anyone who'd ride one hobbyhorse
so hard is bound to be bugs.
And what a hobby to pick, authority.
Well, I'm glad you believe me.
Bowns practically threw me off the ship.
Sure. The captain's a little tetched.
This isn't a gag. I mean it.
He's really crazy. Insane.
Hey, now, you know,
well, most people are.
But he killed Louie. That wasn't an accident
in the chain locker. That was murder.
You know, kid. You might be
a little excited yourself.
- Well, let me tell you from the beginning...
- Not me. Don't tell me.
I like my job, and I want to keep it.
When we get to port,
I'll tell the company agent.
You'll lose your job.
Even if I believed you,
I'd advise you not to.
You can't mean that, Sparks.
I believe in keeping my nose clean.
Really clean.
And out of other people's business.
- That's the only way to get along.
- Not me.
When something's wrong,
I've got to do something about it.
I'm going to report this
when we get ashore.
All right.
Report to the captain. San Sebastin
light, 2 points off the port bow.
Yes, sir.
All fast, sir.
- Hello, Will. It's good to see you.
- Always good to see you, Charlie.
- This is my first officer, Mr. Bowns.
- Mr. Bowns.
- Mr. Roberts.
- My third, Mr. Merriam.
- How do you do, sir?
- Mr. Roberts is our agent here.
This your first voyage to this port,
Mr. Merriam?
- Yes. In fact, it's my first long voyage.
- Drop into the office, I'll get you a guide.
- Thank you.
- Be sure and take him up on that.
The Dunham Line may be strict
aboard ship...
...but you'll find it friendly on shore.
- Drop by the office.
Thank you.
I'm glad you accepted my invitation
so promptly, Mr. Merriam.
Thank you.
Actually, I'd like to have
a few words with you, Mr. Roberts...
...on a matter of great importance.
- Of course. Sit down.
- Thank you.
- Make yourself comfortable.
- All right, Jose, you can go now.
- Yes, sir.
Well, Mr. Merriam,
what is the matter of importance?
It's about Captain Stone, sir.
An old friend.
A great friend of mine, Mr. Merriam.
That makes it all the more difficult.
What I have to tell you
is extremely unpleasant.
And not the captain.
Mr. Merriam himself gave
the order not to stopper the hook.
To my mind, Mr. Merriam had been
working kind of hard or something.
This is my first voyage with Captain Stone
as it is the for all the crew...
...except Mr. Bowns, the radio operator and
the steward. And all the men are agreed...
...the captain...
- That will do, Boats.
- Aye, aye, sir.
- Thank you.
Billy Radd.
I'd like to hear what
you have to say about the captain.
I'd like to know if you think
him competent...
...or if he had anything to do
with the death of Louie Carter.
No, sir. It's like the others said,
we just can't understand it.
The captain is a good captain.
What you call a kind man
and a gentleman.
And Mr. Merriam,
he was always a fine gentleman.
- We all liked Mr. Merriam too.
- That'll do for now, Billy. Thank you.
If I could have your permission, I would like
to mention just one thing, Mr. Roberts, sir.
The captain here hasn't only given us
the best food...
...and looked after the ship
his own self at all times...
...but he saved my life
by that operation at sea.
And I never in my life can forget that.
Should I call in any more witnesses,
Mr. Merriam?
You men may be a little puzzled
by what's been going on here.
Mr. Merriam made certain statements.
I called this informal hearing
to prove to him how unfounded they were.
I felt it my duty
as the company agent... prevent public investigation
of a baseless charge.
Thank you all
for cooperating so splendidly.
Have a good time.
I'm sorry this had to happen, Tom.
Ellen will be wanting to see you.
I'm sure she's been waiting for you
since she saw the Altair...
...come into the harbor last night.
- Does she watch for my ship?
- She's always watching for your ship.
She's got good news.
Is Captain Stone aboard?
No, ma'am. He'll be back
in an hour or so. He's with Mr. Roberts.
You're the new third officer,
aren't you?
I was, but how did you know?
Captain Stone wrote me about you.
A long letter even before he met you.
He was most enthusiastic
about your training ship record.
I know.
I'm Ellen Roberts,
an old friend of the captain.
Because of his letters,
I feel as if I knew you too.
- Tom Merriam.
- How do you do?
Where in the world
are you going with that bag?
Doesn't the Altair
sail tomorrow night?
She sails without me, Ms. Roberts.
That sounds serious.
While I'm waiting,
won't you let me give you a lift?
- Then you can tell me all about it.
- No, thank you.
That bag will be awfully heavy
by the time you reach the hotel.
- Come along.
- All right.
And so you're dreadfully disappointed
and dreadfully hurt.
The whole world seems
to have turned against you...
...just because you made a mistake.
- I didn't make a mistake.
That's almost the captain's voice, Tom.
"I didn't make a mistake."
"I couldn't make a mistake."
"I'm authority." "I'm the captain."
"I'm the third officer."
I've heard it all so often.
It's all so wrong.
You're just like the captain, Tom.
Lonely, austere, bitter.
Without family or friends.
Condemning yourself to a bloodless,
ghost-like existence.
And in the end, it will be
only a ghost ship you will command.
How long do you think
I've known the captain, Tom?
I don't know.
I've known him for 15 years.
For 15 years, I've tried to give him love
instead of loneliness.
You mustn't be like him.
You've got to embrace warmth and life.
- A good joke, a pretty girl.
- I don't know any girls.
That's clear enough, but you will.
I have a younger sister in San Pedro.
She's a secretary for the Dunham Line.
She'll meet you on your next trip north.
I'll see to that.
If you don't like her,
she'll introduce you to other girls...
...and other young men.
Young men who don't even know...
...what the word "authority" means.
I'll see that you don't become
another Captain Stone.
I'm going to change him too.
I can now.
I have the right.
But this is not like you, Will.
I've never known you to hold grudges.
I don't want him on my ship.
People seem to be turning against me.
The boy...
...some of the crew.
I feel their dislike.
- Their distrust.
- Oh, nonsense.
You're only imagining things.
You work too hard, too long, Will.
This voyage down without
a second officer, standing watches.
It's been hard on you.
When you get back to the States,
have a good checkup. Take a rest.
It isn't my health that I'm worried about.
I've lived a lonely life.
A hard life.
You and Ellen are the only friends
I've ever had.
All you need's a rest.
See a good doctor, just as I've said.
You'll see Ellen tonight.
Find new interests.
There are no new interests.
Just authority.
- I have something to tell you, Will.
- That's what Charlie said.
I wanted to be here,
aboard the Altair, when I told you.
I want my rival
to hear and feel my triumph.
I've always loved your fancies, Ellen.
This isn't a fancy.
I want the old Altair to know
that I'm a free woman.
That I can take you from her
and keep you from her.
- You won your case.
- Yes. He finally gave in.
The final papers came through last week.
I'm a free woman.
I expected a different response, Will.
I thought we were both waiting for this.
I had waited.
I had wanted this.
But now there's little I can do or say.
I'm afraid.
- Afraid of me, Will?
- Of my mind, Ellen.
I don't trust it anymore.
- Your mind?
- Don't come close to me. Stand there.
But, Will, l...
I remember Captain Blaker of the Ajax.
She's my first ship.
I was a mess boy.
I watched him lose his mind,
little by little.
He knew it
and could do nothing about it.
It was awful, Ellen.
I've never forgotten it.
We were run down
in a fog off the coast of the Mersey.
The Ajax sank like a rock.
Blaker went with her.
He was lucky.
It's only your memory
that frightens you.
It's more than that.
I felt strange.
Why, I've done things
that I couldn't remember doing.
I've had moments that I felt
that I was on the verge...
...of losing control.
Doing some terrible, stupid, ugly thing.
This morning, when the boy
testified against me...
...I could barely keep my seat.
Give me a chance to get over this.
This feeling that I don't know myself.
That I don't control my thoughts,
my actions.
You can have all the time
in the world.
I'll be waiting here
for the Altair on her return voyage.
I'm a British subject,
and I'll not sing for you or any Heinie.
- Mr. Merriam.
- What goes on here? What are you up to?
Are you hurt, Mr. Merriam?
This man is my officer from the Altair.
He's been hurt.
I've got to get him back aboard.
Naturally, had I had anything to say
about it, I wouldn't be here.
Evidently, Billy had the policeman
bring me aboard.
Of course, sir, I realize I have no right
whatsoever to be aboard the Altair.
I'll be glad to make arrangements to pay
my passage when we reach San Pedro.
I don't wanna be aboard
any more than you want me here.
But I can't do anything about it.
You can't expect me to swim.
That's quite the wrong tone, Merriam.
I was just gonna say
that you'd be my guest on the trip north.
That you'll have no duties.
We'll do everything to make the voyage
as comfortable as possible.
- Thank you.
- In fact, Merriam...
...l'm rather glad that you're onboard.
It will give me a chance to prove
certain theories of mine.
You know, I'm sure you'll find them
very interesting and instructive.
- You can learn many things from me.
- I never doubted that, sir.
I'm sure you never doubted it
when you told Mr. Roberts...
...that I was a murderer
and incompetent.
But we'll forget all that, Mr. Merriam.
- Thank you, captain.
- Mr. Merriam.
You know, there are some captains
who would hold this against you.
Oh, Raphael.
I was wondering
if you got me to bed last...
Hiya, Sparks.
- I seem to have gotten myself in a kind of...
- Don't come in here.
I don't want any funny business
with you.
Look, Sparks, we're friends.
I need your help. Stop kidding
and listen to me, will you?
Yeah, I'll stop kidding.
But as for listening...
...I tell you I'm dead serious,
and I don't wanna hear a word you say.
Captain's gonna kill me, Sparks.
I can see it in his face.
I'm not too dumb a guy now, Sparks.
I'm not yellow. I'm not hysterical.
I'm telling you he's gonna kill me,
and I need your help.
That is hogwash.
At least do me one favor.
Send a wireless to Ms. Roberts
in San Sebastin.
I can't do that. Captain's forbidden all
wireless unless he personally okays them.
Don't you see?
That's part of what I meant.
Hold it.
Move and you'll get a bullet
through your abdomen.
Not a pleasant or quick death.
Perhaps you've never seen
a man die that way.
But I want you to live.
I want you to learn the great lesson
that I thought I'd taught you.
Authority cannot be questioned.
That's crazy talk.
I never felt more sane in my life
than I do at this moment.
Who's crazy?
You, who defied me and are helpless...
...or I, who control your destiny
and the destiny of the Altair...
...and all the lives onboard?
- I wish Bowns...
I wish the crew could see
what I see now.
- Could hear you talk.
- You think I'm insane?
Yes. And they would too
if they could see you now.
Raving and ranting.
I am captain.
As long as I wear these stripes...
...there isn't a man in the crew
that'll believe you or help you.
You'll find them too lazy...
...too cowardly...
...too disinterested.
That's what I want you
to learn, Merriam.
Men are worthless cattle.
And a few men...
...are given authority to drive them.
You can't prove that to me
even with a gun, captain.
I know people aren't that way.
They're good, kind.
They help each other.
It's only hard
to get them to understand.
I'll give you a chance
to make them understand.
You go out there.
Go anyplace you want onboard ship.
Talk to them.
See if you can get them to help you.
See if they'll stand up
with you against authority.
Why, even your friend Sparks
won't help you.
Go ahead. Get out.
Try and get help against me.
Try. Try.
But, Jim, can't you understand
what I'm trying to tell you?
But Louie was your pal.
The best friend you had onboard.
How do you think your pal was caught
in the chain locker?
Do you think that door closed itself?
If you take my advice...'ll quit trying to start
trouble around here.
Boats, you're a sensible man.
Quit trying to stir up trouble
with the crew against the old man.
They don't like it. They don't like you.
And did you ever hear about mutiny?
Good morning, Mr. Bowns.
There isn't any lock on my cabin door.
I was wondering if you could put one on.
Since you have no earthly need
of this...
Listen, Tom.
You'll only get anyone
you try to talk to in Dutch.
- Now, why don't you be a good guy...
- Get this.
I'm desperate, Sparks.
- Why is the lock on my...?
- I don't know anything.
There's only one thing
you can do to please me.
And that's staying away from me
and not talking to me.
Seems to me the captain
is being decent...
...after what you...
- But it's true. I've got to convince you.
Or someone.
The captain's a homicidal maniac.
We've got to...
- Get this off right away.
- Yes, sir.
I know this man's trouble.
I've seen the captain's hatred.
I know...
...and I will watch.
I will watch.
Hiya, Tertius. Close the door.
I don't get this.
"Tom Merriam not aboard Altair.
Why would the captain
want to send this to Mr. Roberts?
I don't know.
And because I don't know
I'm beginning to believe your story, Tom.
This is a reply to a message
sent by Roberts asking if you're aboard.
The way I figure it, maybe you're right.
Maybe the captain intends
to get rid of you.
- Now you know, are you going to help me?
- Yeah.
I'm gonna take this to Bowns
in the morning.
It'll be enough to get him
to listen to you anyhow.
Meanwhile, you better get some rest.
- So long, Tertius.
- So long, and thanks.
- Do you know how to operate the wireless?
- Yes, sir.
If you don't mind, I'd like you to get up
and send a message for me.
I beg your pardon, sir,
but why can't Sparks send it?
The message I'm asking you to send
will answer that question.
Can you read, Finn?
What do you want the paper for?
I'm ready, sir.
This is a lie. You killed him.
You knew he was gonna help me.
Why, you...
You killed him. I know you killed him.
He killed Sparks. Let me go.
He didn't fall overboard.
Captain Stone killed him.
Just as he killed Louie.
Just as he wants to kill me.
I tell you he's crazy.
Can't you understand? He's crazy.
Mr. Merriam may be giving us a clue
as to what's wrong with him.
- You mean the boy is...?
- It's the captain.
- He's mad.
- I don't know how you describe...
...conduct such as this, Mr. Bowns.
- Let me go. Please let me go.
He killed my friend. He killed Louie.
Maybe we ought to have him restrained
so he won't hurt himself.
Get a rope. Truss him up
and put him in his bunk.
What's all the excitement?
You couldn't be telling.
That's fine, boys. That's enough.
Better give him a sedative.
Here's a needle all made up.
- Think he needs it?
- He looks pretty bad. It might quiet him.
Yes, sir.
Please, Mr. Bowns.
Mr. Bowns, please. No.
Mr. Bowns, please.
No, Mr. Bowns.
What do you want?
That's an odd message, surely.
Can't make head nor tail of it.
With the boy here and alive.
Maybe the boy is right.
I don't know. Orders is orders.
I had the boy tied up
and gave him a sedative.
Maybe he ain't the crazy one at that.
- You deck officers have your problem.
- Yeah.
It's going to be the problem
with you fellas as well as mine.
After me, you're next in rank,
and you gotta help me...
...if the boy is right.
If the boy is right.
If the boy is right.
If the boy is right.
If the boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
Maybe the boy is right.
Maybe the boy is right.
Maybe the boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
Maybe the boy is right.
Maybe the boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
The boy is right. The boy is right.
Mac, we gotta do
something about this.
We can't let things stay this way.
I don't know.
The boy is safe.
And his belief in men
and men's essential goodness is secure.
He stands beside me in command.
All is well.
Lights are bright, sir.
And we are homeward bound
to San Pedro.
- For luck.
- Thank you, sir.
Being a sailor, you'll need luck.
You're a sailor, all right, sir.
I don't need eyes to tell me
you're a seaman outward bound.
Oh, Mr. Merriam. Mr. Merriam.
Mr. Merriam, my sister Ellen
asked me to meet your ship.
How do you do?
Yes, she told me all about you.