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Rated R
Copyright 1980 Bloodstar Productions Ltd.
Reviewed by Andrew Borntreger on 'a long time ago'

The Characters:  

  • Captain Ashland - It is he, GEORGE KENNEDY. This man can not have a soul.
  • Trevor Marshall - Richard Crenna! (The Colonel from the Rambo movies!) Second in command of the cruise liner and our hero.
  • Mrs. Marshall - Trevor's wife, that's her contribution to the plot.
  • Robin and Ben - The Marshall kids, Ben must have a bladder infection since he's always looking for the restrooms.
  • Nick and Lori - Two young lovers, she gets tossed overboard by Ashland and he is drowned in a cargo net by the same.
  • Jackie - Lounge comic who is hoisted overboard by the evil ship.
  • Mrs. Morgan - Old woman who is out to jump Ashland's bones, eats poisoned candy.
  • Death Ship - A haunted Nazi interrogation vessel.

Buy It!

The Plot: 

I spent about thirty minutes washing my mouth out after watching this crap. It made me feel cheap and used, and that's not easy to do to a guy. Not only does it have George Kennedy, he 's dressed up like a Nazi ship captain no less. It's poetic I'll admit, didn't know they made uniforms that big. I think there was a typo in the script, what was intended to be "Death Shit" became "Death Ship" and therein lies the tragedy. Ashland is the captain of a cruise ship everyone else is on (Marshall being the XO) when it is rammed by the cursed vessel. The survivors climb aboard the brooding freighter and soon begin encountering mishaps. Ashland also seems to be half possessed by the Nazi captain's spirit, the other half is just Kennedy's bad acting. After everyone else is dead the Marshalls flee overboard with a rubber raft, leaving Ashland to face the terrors awaiting his soul. There is exactly one cool part to this film - and it's when we keep seeing shots of the Death Ship, which is in bright sunlight, on a supposed collision course with the cruise liner, which we can only see it's lights BECAUSE IT'S PITCH DARK. Make sure you have lots of alcohol on hand before popping this tape in the VCR my friends.

Things I Learned From This Movie: 

  • Cruise ships cannot afford decent bands.
  • Making out with some guy wearing a rubber mask drives women wild.
  • Cruise ships don't carry lifeboats, they do carry bright red boxes equipped with oars.
  • Do not pee on the deck of a ghost ship.
  • The open ocean is very calm and has muddy water.
  • Things are much more threatening when filmed upside down.
  • Kids will quite happily drink brown water.
  • Nazi's could not cook worth a damn.
  • George Kennedy can run pretty fast for a fat old guy.

Stuff To Watch For: 

  • 1 min - George Kennedy? For THE LOVE OF GOD NO!
  • 8 mins - I think these ships are about to collide on the international dateline. It's day for one and night for the other.
  • 13 mins - This is stock footage from "The Poseidon Adventure" or something.
  • 15 mins - How the heck did this eclectic group survive? They were on different parts of the ship!
  • 26 mins - Somebody go and turn off the winch then swing him over the deck, jeez.
  • 57 mins - I'd be a serious "we're all sleeping in the same room" dude.
  • 62 mins - Hey, naked Lori! But she's covered in blood from the shower and can't get out! Why is she spinning around?
  • 68 mins - Slow motion scene! Why? Arrgghhhhh!
  • 73 mins - How the heck did Nick get outside? Bad editing! Bad!
  • 89 mins - Damn you George Kennedy, and damn me too...

 Audio clips in wav formatSOUNDSStarving actors speak out 

Green Music Note deathship1.wav Ashland: "Signal him to alter course."
Sailor: "We have sir!"
Ashland: "Well signal him again damn it!"
Green Music Note deathship2.wav Mrs. Morgan: "This old ship seems to have a life of it's own."
Green Music Note deathship3.wav Robin: "I'm scared."
Ben: "You're scared? I'm scared shirtless."
Robin: "It's shitless, oops!"
Green Music Note deathship4.wav Ashland: "This ship needs blood Marshall..."

 Click for a larger imageIMAGESScenes from the movie 



 Watch a sceneVIDEOMPEG video files 

Video Clipdeathship1.mpg - 2.1m
The "International Dateline" explanation might be a little silly, but it is the best I can do. Do you mean that I should honestly believe the director did not care enough about this movie to at least film two ships in the daytime?

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Comments:Write CommentPages: 1 ... 6 7 [8] 9
Death Ship
Reply #57. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:09:49 PM by Arm Commander
What do I see, my Seadogs? A George Kennedy Movie! It must be sunk into the Deep Hell of the Inferno, and hope it won't ever rise from the watery grave ever again! Fire your cannons, swashbucklers. No one ever messes with the Arm Commander or the Pyrates!
Death Ship
Reply #58. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by moviecollector
Wow! I was about to go to Ebay & buy this as a "blind buy."

But yesterday, I decided to go to a video/dvd/cd exchange place & found this for only $2

I had to buy it & am proud to have it in my video collection.
Its a cheesefest, but I love these kinds of movies.

I do got to thank this site for giving it such a funny review, same with THE CHILDREN & FUTURE FORCE - 2 other bad classics that are reviewed here & that I also bought from that same store.   :)

I can't wait for DEATH SHIP 2: STILL CHUGGIN' ALONG.    
Death Ship
Reply #59. Posted on November 25, 2006, 04:10:12 PM by F
"This ship needs blood, Marshall!"

George Kennedy in a Nazi uniform was a sight to see, and it had a few other laughs.
Death Ship
Reply #60. Posted on September 03, 2006, 04:52:25 PM by John Dashwood
Say what you want. Nazi were damn good cooks! Dressed sharp too.
Re: Death Ship
Reply #61. Posted on January 26, 2007, 10:19:34 AM by Barfoclop
Anyone notice that "Nazi" jacket Kennedy was wearing had an Eastern Airlines logo on it?

Wow, was this film bad... but in a good-bad way.
Re: Death Ship
Reply #62. Posted on January 27, 2007, 01:26:24 AM by Joe the Destroyer
God help me!  I actually enjoyed this flick!
Re: Death Ship
Reply #63. Posted on February 06, 2007, 05:27:52 PM by nooly
now that was a bad movie... sometimes i couldn't believe my eyes... and when i thought i was about to get bored, something funny came up =)
Re: Death Ship
Reply #64. Posted on December 13, 2007, 10:42:16 PM by TheDope

I got this movie on the basis of your review, Andrew.

Man, you were so right.

I could tell right away the Jack Hill influence in the script - random acts of cruel violence and rampant embarrassment of the women herein.  Anyone who has seen anything with Jack Hill's name in the credits knows what I mean.

The most painful thing about it was that, in spite of every actor's apparent desire to try and act in a plausible movie, the direction, effects and pacing smack them down at every turn.  And then there's the business of the ending where Marshall's wife is locked up by Ashland one moment and then, after Ashland is waylaid and Ashland and his kids ready themselves to leave the ship, Ashland's wife magically appears, out of the locked chamber and offering no explanation as to how she got out.  Amazing.

And what kind of self-respecting cruise ship lets itself get wrecked by a Nazi ship that doesn't even move?

Painful is an overused word to describe movies like this but in the case of Death Ship, it's accurate.
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