The Sea Shall Not Have Them

The Sea Shall Not Have Them is a 1954 British war film starring Michael Redgrave, Dirk Bogarde and Anthony Steel. It was directed by Lewis Gilbert and is based on the 1953 novel by John Harris, set during the Second World War. Musical soundtrack by composer Malcolm Arnold. The film title is the motto of the Royal Air Force's Air Sea Rescue Service.

The Sea Shall Not Have Them
VHS movie cover
Directed byLewis Gilbert
Produced byDaniel M. Angel
Written byLewis Gilbert
Vernon Harris
based on the book by
John Harris
StarringMichael Redgrave
Dirk Bogarde
Anthony Steel
Nigel Patrick
Music byMalcolm Arnold
CinematographyStephen Dade
Edited byRussell Lloyd
Angel Productions
Distributed byEros Films (UK)
United Artists (USA)
Release date
30 November 1954
Running time
91 min.
CountryUnited Kingdom


A British aircraft is forced to ditch in the North Sea. Taking to the dinghy with the crew is an Air Commodore with secret German plans. An RAF Air Sea Rescue launch is deployed to the search, struggling against bad weather, mechanical problems and a fire in the galley.



Referring to the film's title, Noël Coward said of the film's two male stars, "I don't see why not. Everyone else has."[1] Redgrave was reportedly bisexual, while Bogarde was homosexual.[1]

The film was shot in Riverside Studios, and Felixstowe, Suffolk.[2]


  1. The Guardian: Sexy self-image that revved up Dirk Bogarde
  2. A. H. Weiler (13 June 1954). "By Way of Report: Disney Cameramen to Go to Far Places For New Nature Studies -- Addenda". The New York Times.
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