A Seagoing Love Adventure

The Coffin Ship
D: William Garwood. P: Thanhouser Film Corporation. USA 1911
Print: Nederlands Filmmuseum
Engl. and German titles 

“Because of 1911 production convention, a sprawling adventure is truncated to one-reel length. Good location work, a strength of Thanhouser pictures, creates a visually strong seagoing story of a stowaway and a shipwreck. Long Island Sound locations were near the studio.
A review of The Coffin Ship in ‘The Moving Picture World’ criticized at length errors of accuracy in the depiction of the merchant ship and its sailors, and technicalities of sailing and of the shipwreck, despite the good story and its dramatic effectiveness. Such criticism disproves the myth that critics and audiences accepted anything on the screen at face value.”

The Morning Telegraph, June 25, 1911:
“This is one of the best films of the week, both as regards its story and for the manner in which it is presented. (…)The sea scenes and the many scenes taken on a lumber schooner are particularly fine. One scene is especially so, this being the one with the boat in a sinking condition, her hull far down in the water, which is several inches deep on her decks. One might question the likelihood of such natty uniforms being used aboard an ordinary lumber schooner. It may be picturesque, but is it true to actualities? Secure this film. Patrons will enjoy it.”