You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

The Sand Pebbles

Out of the 1926 political and military turmoil in China, producer-director Robert Wise has created a sensitive, personal drama, set against a background of old style US Navy gunboat diplomacy. The Sand Pebbles, based on the novel by Richard McKenna, is a handsome production, boasting some excellent acting characterizations.

Cast:
Steve McQueen Richard Attenborough Richard Crenna Candice Bergen Marayat Andriane Mako

Out of the 1926 political and military turmoil in China, producer-director Robert Wise has created a sensitive, personal drama, set against a background of old style US Navy gunboat diplomacy. The Sand Pebbles, based on the novel by Richard McKenna, is a handsome production, boasting some excellent acting characterizations.

Steve McQueen looks and acts the part he plays so well – that of a machinist’s mate with nine years of navy service. Richard Crenna likewise is authentic as the gunboat captain, a young lieutenant who speaks the platitudes of leadership with a slight catch in his throat, due to lack of practical experience.

The title derives from a language perversion of San Pablo, formal name of the gunboat on Yangtze river patrol. Among the crew is Richard Attenborough, very believable in his role as a sailor who falls in love with newcomer Marayat Andriane in a tragic bi-racial romance. Her performance is sensitive.

The major drawback to the film as a whole is a surfeit of exposition, mainly in the second half. Every scene is in itself excellent, but unfortunately the overall dramatic flow of the pic suffers in the end.

1966: Nominations: Best Picture, Actor (Steve McQueen), Supp. Actor (Mako), Color Cinematography, Color Art Direction, Editing, Original Music Score, Sound

The Sand Pebbles

Production: Argyle/Solar/20th Century-Fox. Director Robert Wise; Producer Robert Wise; Screenplay Robert Anderson; Camera Joseph MacDonald; Editor William Reynolds; Music Jerry Goldsmith; Art Director Boris Leven

Crew: (Color) Widescreen. Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1966. Running time: 193 MIN.

With: Steve McQueen Richard Attenborough Richard Crenna Candice Bergen Marayat Andriane Mako

More Film

  • Kingsman: The Golden Circle

    China Box Office: 'Kingsman' Dominates With $39 Million Opening

    Out of the 1926 political and military turmoil in China, producer-director Robert Wise has created a sensitive, personal drama, set against a background of old style US Navy gunboat diplomacy. The Sand Pebbles, based on the novel by Richard McKenna, is a handsome production, boasting some excellent acting characterizations. Steve McQueen looks and acts the […]

  • Kingsman: The Golden Circle

    'Kingsman: The Golden Circle' Tops International Box Office With China Debut

    Out of the 1926 political and military turmoil in China, producer-director Robert Wise has created a sensitive, personal drama, set against a background of old style US Navy gunboat diplomacy. The Sand Pebbles, based on the novel by Richard McKenna, is a handsome production, boasting some excellent acting characterizations. Steve McQueen looks and acts the […]

  • James Toback sexual harassment

    Dozens of Women Accuse Director James Toback of Sexual Harassment

    Out of the 1926 political and military turmoil in China, producer-director Robert Wise has created a sensitive, personal drama, set against a background of old style US Navy gunboat diplomacy. The Sand Pebbles, based on the novel by Richard McKenna, is a handsome production, boasting some excellent acting characterizations. Steve McQueen looks and acts the […]

  • Robert Hawkins, Variety Rome Correspondent, Dies

    Bob Hawkins, Longtime Variety Journalist in Italy, Dies at 93

    Out of the 1926 political and military turmoil in China, producer-director Robert Wise has created a sensitive, personal drama, set against a background of old style US Navy gunboat diplomacy. The Sand Pebbles, based on the novel by Richard McKenna, is a handsome production, boasting some excellent acting characterizations. Steve McQueen looks and acts the […]

  • Boo 2! A Madea Halloween

    Box Office: Tyler Perry's 'Boo 2!' Tops Downbeat Weekend With $21.7 Million

    Out of the 1926 political and military turmoil in China, producer-director Robert Wise has created a sensitive, personal drama, set against a background of old style US Navy gunboat diplomacy. The Sand Pebbles, based on the novel by Richard McKenna, is a handsome production, boasting some excellent acting characterizations. Steve McQueen looks and acts the […]

  • Aida Begic Director Aida Begic poses

    Antalya Festival: Aida Begic on ‘Never Leave Me,’ Shooting Movies with Kids

    Out of the 1926 political and military turmoil in China, producer-director Robert Wise has created a sensitive, personal drama, set against a background of old style US Navy gunboat diplomacy. The Sand Pebbles, based on the novel by Richard McKenna, is a handsome production, boasting some excellent acting characterizations. Steve McQueen looks and acts the […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content