Directed by Victor Fleming
Second or third viewing
Old Billy Bones (Lionel Barrymore) turns up at the inn run by Jim Hawkins’s (Jackie Cooper) mother with a mysterious chest. Soon other unsavory characters turn up in search of Billy. Upon Billy’s untimely death, Jim discovers a treasure map in the chest. Gentlemen of the town hire a ship to search for the treasure. Before they know it, unscrupulous but loveable Long John Silver (Wallace Beery) has signed on as cook and brought aboard his pirate cronies as crew. Long John and Jim become fast friends and the adventure begins.
This movie was a ton of fun and I’m sure immensely popular with boys when it came out. I thought the style foreshadowed The Wizard of Oz, also directed by Fleming, in its storybook exaggeration and charm. The pirates are deliciously vile! I think those who enjoyed The Adventures of Robin Hood would like this.