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Under the Buccaneer's Banner

(A Pirate Fights Fair)

Director: Eugen Martin
Script: H. Harun, G. Parolini, E. Simonelli
Music: Michael Hinz
Dialogue: Helmut Harun
Picture: J. Izzarelli
Sets: Francisco Carnet
Asst. Dir.: Franz Dolz
Editor: Edith von Seydewith
Camera: Martin Leyva
Sound: GŁnther Rauch
Director of Cinematography: Andreas Dolerz
Garderobe: Valeria Sponsale
Make-up: Franz Pujol
Special Effects: M. Rossi
Stills: Antonio Ibanez
Asst. Producer: Horst Backwinkel
Producer: Leonard Martin
Executive Producer: Dr. Alfons Carcasona

Albert von EyckHans von Borsody
AltagraciaBrigitte Corey
MoiraHelga Line
BrasseurConrad Handersen
IsabellaJane Clair
Hans BlankAlois Induni
GovernorCarlo Timberlani
Van DoorenAlois S. Polasch
CostelloMario Steno
MiguelJo March
VirenoSalvatore Furnari
One EyeJosef Martin
GovernessCarmen Lujan
Queen of SpainAmalia Rodriguez
Hans von HamburgMichael Kintan
Segura VazquezAntonio Escribano

and others

The Plot

It is the year 1620. The Spanish conquerors have occupied South and Middle America and gold is flowing from the new colonies to the Mother Country. But, in spite of a sharp quard by Spanish war ships, fewer and fewer galleons manage to reach the Spanish coast. Many ships, laden with fabulous treasure, don’t even reach the open sea. They’re captured only a few hours after they set sail by pirates in the Carribean Ocean.

In Madrid, the Court and the Admirality are in an uproar. How can it be that the pirates are so amazingly well informed, even about the most secret plans of the Spaniards? How do these adventurers sailing under the flag with the skull and crossbones always know exactly which ships are carrying the most valuable cargo? Who is betraying the routes the ships will take before they put out to sea?

It is known that the pirates follow a rigid code imposed by a secret central organization which has formed them into a devastating armada. The pirates have a colony and their own harbour on the Island of Tortuga. It is here that they unload and divide their loot.

The leader of the pirates is El Valiente. No one knows what he really looks like because his face is always hidden behind a red mask. The attacks are planned under his guidance. Although he never divulges the source of his extremly accurate information, his companions suspect that he has influential connections in Maracaibo. This impenetrable fortress is the residence of the Spanish Governor.

The “Santa Maria” has just been captured after a hard fight. She’s a big prize, even for El Valiente’s men. Because of her extremely valuable cargo, she sailed under heavy guard. The pirates decided that their leader, himself, accompanied by a second ship, under the command of Captain Brasseur, should lead the attack on the “Santa Maria” with his frigate.

El Valiente is successful and withdraws, leaving Brasseur to bring the captured ship back to Tortuga. But Brasseur is treacherous. Instead of returning to Tortuga, he stashes the ship’s treasure on a small island. He then blows his own ship up with all his men on board and manages to get back to Tortuga in a small life boat. Once back, he claims that his ship was attacked and cleverly manages to direct suspicion toward his comrade, Albert von Eyck.

Albert, one of El Valientes most daring captains, learns of this devilish plot at the slave market in Tortuga. Altagracia, a spirited Mestiza, is amongst the human merchandise. She pleases Albert and he purchases her. But Brasseur tries to interfere with the sale. A wild swordfight ensues which Albert is able to end without bloodshed. Then he orders that Altagracia and the other slaves be brought to his ship.

But a band of pirates, incited by Brasseur, pursue Albert and his men, the gigantic Hans Blank, van Dooren and the wily dwarf, Vireno. They finally reach the safety of their ship, the “Teutonia”. They head for the open sea under full sail only to find themselves now threatened by the Spanish Armada on one side and the enraged pirates on the other.

Albert wants to clear himself of suspicion with El Valiente who is in Maracaibo. But he is caught in the crossfire between the Spanish ship and the two pirate ships. He decides to take the side of the helpless Spanish galleon. Albert rescues the Spanish ship and the charming Countess Isabella expresses her gratitude. This striking Spanish woman is the god-child of the Queen. Albert, who now poses as a German scientist named Eisenbrink and asserts that Blank ist the Captain of the “Teutonia”, accepts her invitation to accompany her to Maracaibo where he makes the acquaintance of the influential Governor.

Once they are in the splendid Residence, the attractive Altagracia keeps her master under constant observation. She is especially annoyed when Albert is in the company of the beautiful Isabella or the cunning, red-haired Countess Moira. Altagracia fears Moira not only as a rival but because the red-head knows who “Eisenbrink” really is. She has even offered to take Albert to El Valiente.

In the meantime, the treacherous Brasseur has not been idle. He has secretly come ashore in Maracaibo. He intends to use the entire pirate fleet, under his command, to attack and plunder the fortress. But first, he betrays Albert.

The Governor abruptly cuts short a party in Countess Isabella’s honour. With a cruel laugh, he orders the Palace Guard to sieze Albert and take him to the torture chamber. Meanwhile, Brasseur’s band of pirates storms the fortress but they fail to take it in their first assault.

Blank manages to free Albert and the two of them plunge into the fight against Brasseur where they find themselves caught between the two sides for the second time. During the course of the fighting, Albert makes an astonishing discovery. As Valiente, the pirate in the red mask, falls mortally wounded, Albert removes the mask only to find it hides the face of none other than the red-headed Countess Moira. El Valiente alias Moira obtained her exact knowledge concerning the routes of the treasure laden galleons directly from the Governor who was in love with her.

The pirates are beaten back. Brasseur tries to escape with Albert’s ship. But before he can accomplish this Albert overpowers him in a savage duel. The mutinous pirates have lost their leader; their ships are in flames. The battle over Maracaibo has been won. Albert, at the head of his faithful followers, is celebrated as a hero. The Governor com-missions him a Captain in his personal Honour Guard and names him Superintendent of shipping in the Carribean.

But the idea of living under foreign rule goes against the nature of the unwilling Captain. His heart yearns for freedom and he prefers to be his own master. He wants to begin a new life with Altagracia and his friends. Not the life of a pirate but − as the faithful Hans Blank puts it − the life of a man whose heart belongs to the sea and who prizes freedom above anything else ... .