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Strange Cargo ()

directed by
featuring Joan Crawford, Clark Gable, Ian Hunter, Peter Lorre, Paul Lukas

"Strange" is right: this mystical MGM melodrama has to be the oddest of the studio's Clark Gable-Joan Crawford vehicles. When eight prisoners escape from a New Guinea penal colony, they are picked up by a sloop commandeered by another escapee named Verne (Gable) and his trollop girl friend Julie (Joan Crawford). Among the fugitives is Cambreau (Ian Hunter), a soft-spoken, messianic character who has a profound effect on his comrades. One by one, the escapees abandon their evil purposes and find God-and a peaceful death--through the auspices of the Christlike Cambreau. The last to succumb to Cambreau's ministrations is Verne, who agrees to return to return to the prison colony serve out his sentence if Julie will wait for him (which she does). A superb Franz Waxman score provides a touch of show-biz grandeur to this haunting fable. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi Hide synopsis

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