Appointment with Venus (film)
|Appointment with Venus|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Ralph Thomas|
|Produced by||Betty Box|
|Written by||Nicholas Phipps
|Music by||Benjamin Frankel|
|8 October 1951|
Appointment with Venus is a 1951 film adaptation of the Jerrard Tickell novel of the same name. It was directed by Ralph Thomas, produced by Betty E. Box and its screenplay was written by the novelist Nicholas Phipps. The film was based on the evacuation of Alderney cattle from the Channel Island during World War II.
In the United States the film was re-titled Island Rescue.
In 1940, after the fall of France, the fictitious Channel Island of Armorel is occupied by a small garrison of German troops under the benign command of Hauptmann Weiss (George Coulouris). He finds that the hereditary ruler, the Suzerain (Kenneth More), is away in the army, leaving the Provost in charge.
Back in London, the Ministry of Agriculture realise that during the evacuation of the island, Venus, a prize pedigree cow, has been left behind. They petition the War Office to do something urgently, and Major Morland (David Niven), is assigned the task of rescuing Venus. When he realises that the Suzerain's sister, Nicola Fallaize (Glynis Johns) is in Wales, serving as an army cook, she is quickly posted to the War Office and the two, with a sergeant and a naval officer, are landed on the island.
They contact the Provost and discover that the Hauptmann, a cattle breeder in civilian life, is about to have the cow shipped to Germany. In a race against the Germans discovering their presence, they spirit the cow onto a beach and via a special craft, onto a motorboat which takes them to Britain.
The story is based on a real incident told to Tickell after the war by an army officer who was involved in a similar event.
The fictitious island of Armorel may be based on Sark, one of the locations where the film was shot. Sark, inhabited by 500 people, also has a feudal ruler, the Seigneur, as depicted in the play The Dame of Sark. Like all the other Channel Islands, it was occupied by German troops 1940–1945. British commandos made two unsuccessful raids in 1942–43.
- David Niven as Major Valentine Morland
- Glynis Johns as Nicola Fallaize
- George Coulouris as Captain Weiss
- Barry Jones as the Provost
- Kenneth More as Lionel Fallaize, Nicola's cousin
- Noel Purcell as Trawler Langley
- Bernard Lee as Brigadier
- Jeremy Spenser as Georges
- Patric Doonan as Sergeant Forbes
- Martin Boddey as Sergeant Vogel
- John Horsley as Naval Officer Kent
- George Benson as Senior clerk
- Richard Wattis as Carruthers
- David Horne as Magistrate
- Philip Stainton as Constable
- Pat Nye as ATS auxiliary