Donovan's Reef

Donovan's Reef

John Ford (1963)

U Certificate


Our Score
This ramshackle but immensely enjoyable romp from John Ford was, sadly, the last teaming of the great director and his friend John Wayne. Both deserved a better farewell. In a knockabout tale, Elizabeth Allen co-stars as the prim Bostonian whose presence on a Pacific island disturbs the drinking and brawling lifestyle of the Duke and his navy buddy, Lee Marvin, and her dark beauty illuminates the film. There's a seasonal touch involving Dorothy Lamour and a children's Christmas, which some may find oversentimental, and really the only true merit in the whole ragged adventure is the Technicolor photography of veteran William Clothier.


An American soldier settles down with a friend and a kindly doctor on a South Sea island to relax in the aftermath of the Second World War. The arrival of the medic's snobbish daughter throws their idyllic life into turmoil, leaving them struggling to make her father seem respectable. Comedy drama directed by John Ford, starring John Wayne, Lee Marvin, Jack Warden, Elizabeth Allen and Cesar Romero.

Cast & Crew

"Guns" Donovan John Wayne
"Boats" Gilhooley Lee Marvin
"Doc" Dedham Jack Warden
Amelia Dedham Elizabeth Allen
Andre de Lage Cesar Romero
Fleur Dorothy Lamour
Lelani Jacqueline Malouf
Sergeant Menkowicz Mike Mazurki
Father Cluzeot Marcel Dalio
Mr Eu Jon Fong
Sister Matthew Yvonne Peattie
James Ralph Volkie
Captain Martin Frank Baker (1)
Sister Gabrielle Carmen Estrabeau
Festus Chuck Roberson
Boston attorney Francis X O'Brien Edgar Buchanan
Director John Ford
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Paramount Film Service LtdAvailable on: video and DVD
Drama Comedy