Movie Review: Dangerous Charter (1962)

Synopsis: A trio of fishermen are on the ocean when they come across a seemingly abandoned yacht. After finding the body of the only passenger left on board, they decide to bring it to port, hoping to make money salvaging it. They are later thrilled when the Coast Guard gives them ownership of the vessel, allowing them to charter it out. However, the ship was once owned by a group of smugglers who come to claim the cargo they have hidden on board.

Who's in it? The movie stars Chris Warfield, Sally Fraser, Dick Foote, Peter Forster and Chick Chandler.

Review: My wife and daughter had martial arts tonight and, while waiting for them to get home, I decided to watch this movie. I wasn't sure what to expect from it because Paramount Plus doesn't have the greatest descriptions. However, it ended up being a decent film.

I think the thing I found most entertaining about this movie was just how gullible the fishermen were. OK, to be fair, Marty (Warfield) seemed to be suspicious of the Coast Guard's very generous offer but even he didn't seem to see the red flags when they confessed the truth to him. I, personally, would have been more than a little suspicious after finding the vessel with just one dead passenger.

Despite this, the movie wasn't as predictable as I thought it would be. The main bad guy, Monet (Forster), was cordial yet firm, making his offer to pay the crew for delivering him and his cargo safely suspicious but not something he didn't necessarily plan to honor. Adding to that was the fact they could have just as easily even their odds by killing any of the crew members who weren't necessary. If anything, Monet seemed to be more of a danger to his own henchmen at times.

I also wondered what, if any, the Coast Guard's plan was. They went out of their way to use bait to trap Monet and his crew but showed no signs they planned on following the ship or staying in radio contact.  It made me wonder if they would show up to save the day or if Marty and the rest would need to save themselves. There was also the possibility of the Coast Guard just making things worse for everyone.

The revelation about Dick being a drug addict was an intriguing twist as well, adding a bit of a wild card to the situation since movies like this tend to be a bit over the top as far as drug use is concerned. He was one of those characters that could prove to be a surprise (albeit unintended) hero or just serve to prove how cruel Monet was.

The ending probably could have used a little more action but there was enough tension to keep it entertaining through the end. At minimum, it wasn't a film that fizzled out, like so many others I've seen.

Final Opinion: It was an entertaining and unpredictable movie that proved to be a good choice. I'd recommend taking the time to watch it if you get a chance.

My Grade: A


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