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20,000 Leagues Under The Sea Review

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★★★★

A wonderful Disney adventure from Jules Verne's novel, Kirk Douglas (first seen singing A Whale Of A Tale as he does an incredible stunt with his guitar) and Peter Lorre are shipwrecked when their voyage is interrupted by a supposed sea serpent.

The monster turns out to be a wonderfully-designed 19th Century nuclear submarine captained by Nemo (Mason), an organ-playing pacifist in a quilted smoking jacket, who intends to end war by sinking all the warships on the ocean. Mason's urbane genius and Douglas' dimpled two-fistedness (and stripy sailor shirt) beef up a floppy script.

Fleischer, however, does marvellously by the magical set-pieces: a Bach-scored undersea funeral, a skirmish with cannibal islanders, a battle with an impressive giant squid and a moving dying fall as the sub goes down with all hands.