Cast & Crew
While serving as a British submarine commander during World War II, Geoffrey Peace destroyed a Nazi U-boat and obeyed explicit orders to kill all survivors. Still haunted by the incident, he now operates a small smuggling operation out of Malta with former shipmate David Garland. While playing chess aboard ship, the two men are approached by Dutchman Harry Riker, another former shipmate, who has a plan to recover a cache of diamonds once hidden by a geologist on a Spanish galleon off the Skeleton Coast. Also involved in the scheme are Julie Chambois, the geologist's widow, and Johann, an imbecilic German who knows the desert terrain. In spite of a personality conflict between Riker and Garland, Peace agrees to navigate his cutter through dangerous coastal waters; later, as the group makes its way across the South African desert to the treasure site, Peace comes to realize that Johann is the one survivor of the wartime slaughter. The galleon is almost entirely buried in sand dunes, but the gems are eventually unearthed; Riker then dislodges a timber brace that kills Garland and causes the deck of the galleon to collapse on Johann. Peace divulges his true identity, forcing the German to his feet, but Riker shoots him down with his rifle. Before dying, however, Johann plunges his knife into Riker as a wave washes the diamonds he was clutching out to sea. Only Peace and Julie are left to return empty-handed.
Marvin H. Albert
Location scenes filmed on Malta and in Almeria, Spain. Opened in London in November 1968.