13 user 4 critic

The Moonraker (1958)

After the battle of Worcester at the end of the Civil War, the main aim of Oliver Cromwell's Commonwealth is to capture Charles Stuart. The future king's escape depends on the intrepid Earl... See full summary »


David MacDonald (as David Macdonald)


Robert Hall (screenplay), Wilfred Eades (screenplay) (as Wilfrid Eades) | 2 more credits »


Learn more

More Like This 

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A minister is accidentally appointed to a snobbish parish.

Directors: John Boulting, Roy Boulting
Stars: Peter Sellers, Cecil Parker, Isabel Jeans
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

In 1648, during the English Civil War, Captain Sylvester switches sides between the Parliamentary and Royalist camps as his interests dictate, while King Charles I is on the run from Oliver Cromwell's troops.

Director: John Gilling
Stars: Lionel Jeffries, Oliver Reed, Jack Hedley
Certificate: Passed Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Esther (Kathleen Ryan) goes into service in Victorian England, only to be seduced by the sweet talking groom William (Sir Dirk Bogarde), who then takes off with his employer's daughter. ... See full summary »

Directors: Ian Dalrymple, Peter Proud
Stars: Kathleen Ryan, Dirk Bogarde, Cyril Cusack
The Games (1970)
Drama | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Four marathon runners (one from England, one from the U.S., a Czechoslovakian, and an Australian Aborigine) prepare to run in the Olympic games. The film follows each one and shows what their motivations are for running in the games.

Director: Michael Winner
Stars: Michael Crawford, Ryan O'Neal, Charles Aznavour
Go to Blazes (1962)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

After yet another smash-and-grab goes wrong, a bungling trio of small-time crooks flash an idea of using a fire engine as a getaway vehicle. But they keep being mistaken for genuine firemen and it starts to become a flaming nuisance.

Director: Michael Truman
Stars: Dave King, Robert Morley, Daniel Massey
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Having pulled off the smallest ever train robbery, Little Walter and his crew decide to get out of London. The six of them set up business in a disused monastery off the Cornish coast, ... See full summary »

Director: Jeremy Summers
Stars: Ronald Fraser, Barbara Windsor, Grégoire Aslan
Action | Comedy | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Whilst traveling in pre-war Nazi Germany, a young couple realise a passenger seems to have been kidnapped off their train, but, no other passenger aside from themselves, recalls her.

Director: Anthony Page
Stars: Elliott Gould, Cybill Shepherd, Angela Lansbury
Glory at Sea (1952)
Adventure | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

In 1940, the Captain of an old Royal Navy destroyer struggles with his crew, as well as the Nazis.

Director: Compton Bennett
Stars: Trevor Howard, Richard Attenborough, Sonny Tufts
Rollerball (1975)
Action | Sci-Fi | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In a corporate-controlled future, an ultra-violent sport known as Rollerball represents the world, and one of its powerful athletes is out to defy those who want him out of the game.

Director: Norman Jewison
Stars: James Caan, John Houseman, Maud Adams
The Bargee (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Hemel Pike is a canal barge casanova, aided and abetted by his illiterate cousin, Ronnie. Hemel has a girl in every town along his route, and each one is intent on marriage. He is finally ... See full summary »

Director: Duncan Wood
Stars: Harry H. Corbett, Hugh Griffith, Eric Sykes
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Anthony Hancock gives up his office job to become an abstract artist. He has a lot of enthusiasm, but little talent, and critics scorn his work. Nevertheless, he impresses an emerging very talented artist.

Director: Robert Day
Stars: Tony Hancock, George Sanders, Paul Massie
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A very British comedy about a blackmailer and his victims.

Director: Mario Zampi
Stars: Terry-Thomas, Peter Sellers, Peggy Mount


Cast overview, first billed only:
George Baker ... The Moonraker
Sylvia Syms ... Anne Wyndham
Marius Goring ... Colonel Beaumont
Peter Arne ... Edmund Tyler
Clive Morton ... Lord Harcourt
Gary Raymond ... Charles Stuart
Richard Leech ... Henry Strangeways
Iris Russell Iris Russell ... Judith Strangeways
Michael Anderson Jr. ... Martin Strangeways (as Michael Anderson Jnr.)
Paul Whitsun-Jones Paul Whitsun-Jones ... Parfitt
John Le Mesurier ... Cromwell
Patrick Troughton ... Captain Wilcox
Julian Somers Julian Somers ... Captain Foster
Sylvia Bidmead Sylvia Bidmead ... Meg
Patrick Waddington ... Lord Dorset


After the battle of Worcester at the end of the Civil War, the main aim of Oliver Cromwell's Commonwealth is to capture Charles Stuart. The future king's escape depends on the intrepid Earl of Dawlish, who as the Moonraker has already spirited away many Royalists. Dawlish travels to the Windwhistle Inn on the south coast to prepare the escape, where he meets Anne Wyndham, the fiancée of a top Roundhead colonel. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


£500 REWARD! The Moonraker must be captured... DEAD OR ALIVE!


Action | Adventure | Drama | War


See all certifications »






Release Date:

3 August 1958 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Blood on the Sword See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)


Color (Colour by) (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Gary Raymond's film debut. See more »


The Roundhead troops wear red sashes. This was the sash colour worn by Royalists - Roundheads wore tawny or blue. See more »


The Moonraker
Music by Laurie Johnson
Lyrics by Geoffrey Parsons
Sung by Ronnie Hilton over the Main Titles
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Underwatched and underated English Swashbuckler

It is a real shame this film has received so little attention from fans and critics over the years. It is by far one of the most watchable, entertaining, and interesting swashbucklers made.

The period and setting of the English Civil War is a much-underused one, the Moonraker serves up every aspect of this tortured period of England's history. The fantastic consumes, magnificent mansions, and dashing heroes, offset by the darker aspects of The Civil War: hatred, mistrust, and exile. The storyline of chase and escape though not complex, is rich enough to offer the viewer with everything a swashbuckler requires; revenge, hatred, honour, courage romance and of course swordplay!! Not enough buckles are swashed as accurately or as interestingly as they are in the Moonraker. Unlike in many swashbucklers where the actors brandish weapons from a mix of different periods(usualy totally wrong), the Moonraker pays huge attention to historic accuracy in all the weapons and armour used. The same attention to detail went into the elaborate costumes and hugely impressive use of the sets, including the actual Bodiam Castle!

The actual action itself is very well done, larger group battles contrasted with intense one-on-one action between our hero Lord Dawlish, (George Baker), and his nemesis the insidious Major Greg, (the late Peter Arne). Their duel in the darkened inn is probably one of the most atmospheric and well choreographed duels in any British film. This compared to perhaps the best duel on film ever that between Cary Elwes and Mandy Patinkin in the Princess Bride. The larger battles once again demonstrate Bakers terrific athleticism, backed by the dogged Clive Morton as Lord Harcourt.

The rest of the straightforward story is carried though by the excellent supporting cast, Notably Marius Goering as Colonel Beaumont, and the ever brilliant John Le Mesurier as a sullen, though surprisingly good looking version of the very ugly Oliver Cromwell. However,the Star-supporting actor has to be the little known, and equally underrated Paul Whitsun-Jones as Mr Parfitt. Parfitt adds much of the films light relief with his pompous tirades which accurately reflected the manner and feelings of much of the gentry of the period. Whitsun-Jones shows his fantastic versatility at the end of the film, throwing off his blustery comic role, and donning that of a hero; doing his part for King and Country. Parfitt supplies probably the most poignant moment in the film as he sacrifices his own life so the King, and his hero The Moonraker, can escape.

Sylvia Syms is faultless though not outstanding as the love interest Anne Whyndham,and the future Dr Who Patrick Troughton is also well placed as the harassed and hard-nosed Captain Wilcox.

The only letdowns acting-wise are the King (Gary Raymond), and to a lesser degree the Innkeeper Henry Strangeways (Richard Leech). Leech is far too subdued as the salt-of-the-earth Landlord, plus his Irish accent is poorly hidden by his woeful attempt at west-country drawl.

Raymond is far to effete as Charles Stuart, lacking the flare or energy of either Baker or Morton as he glides about, or poses like a ballet dancer. His best moment is in the duel in the cloisters where he picks up his act, only for it to tail off again almost at once.

However the casting of Michael Anderson Jr as young Martin Strangeways has to be the most ghastly oversight of the whole film. This very British film is let down by the very American sounding 'brat actor', who's strong American accent grates irritatingly alongside Bakers refined English. Mercifully his appearances are both short and few.

Overall the film is a triumph of 'all British' swashbuckling. While predictable it is not corny as so many swashbucklers are. The key cast is kept small (and almost all are fantastic), the romantic twist not long and drawn out so as to be tiresome, and the fighting fast paced and frequent. As well as this it's a family film with few of the crudities or disembowellings of modern swashbucklers whilst retaining a realistic level of violence.

A must for fans of buckle swashing or historical themed films, and highly

recommended for everyone else. 7.5/10

21 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 13 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed