The Extraordinary Seaman is strictly steerage cargo. A tepid story keel, not entirely – but almost – devoid of amusement strength, has been ballasted with padding newsreel footage and other effect to yield an unstable comedy vessel. David Niven, Faye Dunaway, Alan Alda, Mickey Rooney and Jack Carter end up awash in the artistic debris.
Set in the Philippines where three US Navy men, in flight from the Japanese, discover an urbane Niven, as a Royal Navy officer, living in uncanny nattiness aboard a beached ship. Dunaway joins the crew as Niven sets sail for Australia.
To simulate the original environment, pic was shot in Baja, California, but what shows in the final cut could have been shot off Santa Barbara.