- 1 hr 35 min
Set in the early 1800s, Tripoli (1950) is a historical drama film that follows the adventures of an American naval officer, Lt. Brian O'Brien (John Payne), who is sent to Tripoli on a mission to negotiate the release of American hostages held by the Barbary pirates. Directed by Will Price, the film features an impressive ensemble cast including Maureen OâHara as the love interest, Lady Sheelah Bentley, and Howard Da Silva as the villainous Pacha of Tripoli.
The story begins with Lt. O'Brien's arrival in Tripoli, which is under the control of the Pacha, a ruthless governor who demands ransom money for the release of American hostages. O'Brien is soon embroiled in a dangerous game of politics and intrigue, aided by a local rebel leader, Yussef Karamanli (Grant Withers), who is plotting to overthrow the Pacha and establish a new government.
As O'Brien navigates the treacherous political landscape of Tripoli, he also finds himself falling in love with Sheelah Bentley, the widow of the former British ambassador to Tripoli. Despite the obstacles they face, including the disapproval of Sheelah's father, Lord Bentley (Lester Matthews), the two embark on a passionate romance that is threatened by the Pacha's lustful desires for Sheelah.
Meanwhile, the situation in Tripoli becomes increasingly volatile as Yussef's rebellion gains momentum and the Americans' attempts to negotiate the release of the hostages are met with resistance from the Pacha. O'Brien and Yussef team up to launch a daring rescue mission, with the help of a group of loyal Tripolitanian soldiers and sailors.
The film boasts impressive action sequences, including a thrilling naval battle between the Americans and the Barbary pirates, and a horseback chase through the desert, as O'Brien and Yussef race to reach the hostages before the Pacha does.
With its lush cinematography, vivid depictions of the exotic city of Tripoli, and a stirring score by Victor Young, Tripoli is an exciting adventure film that captures the romance and danger of life on the high seas in the early 19th century. The film also explores themes of colonialism, imperialism, and cultural clashes, as the various factions struggle for power and influence in a rapidly changing world.
John Payne delivers a strong performance as the brave and resourceful Lt. O'Brien, while Maureen O'Hara brings her trademark beauty and sophistication to the role of Lady Sheelah. Howard Da Silva is a memorable and menacing villain as the Pacha of Tripoli, while Grant Withers provides solid support as the rebel leader Yussef.
Overall, Tripoli is an entertaining and well-crafted adventure film that will appeal to fans of classic Hollywood cinema, as well as history buffs and anyone who enjoys a good old-fashioned swashbuckler.