My Forgotten Man (1993)

When Errol Flynn spun tales of his exploits, he gave the impression that his life off-screen was just as daring as anything he portrayed on-screen.  How is it then that a movie based on his early years, a time when he sailed up the Australia’s east coast, prospected for gold and was tried for murder, can be so damned boring?

 

The answer, in part, lies in the fact that instead of being portrayed as a charming rogue, Flynn comes across as a shallow cad. Whether he is pilfering funds, shoplifting suits or gate-crashing parties, the depiction of Flynn’s questionable activities lacks the mischievousness displayed by two street urchins who steal his belongings.

 

In its depiction of an aimless leading character, the film makes the fatal mistake of itself appearing directionless, and though Guy Pearce may bear a physical resemblance to Flynn, he is unable to make the star’s devil-may-care attitude appealing. In this tale, there is not the slightest hint of Sherwood Forest amongst the jungles of New Guinea.

 

Instead, this depiction of a movie star’s life before he achieved fame is more akin to Goodbye Norma Jean. 

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The real-life inspiration for fictional character Klaus Reicher is Dr. Hermann Erben.

 

Penelope Watts is a fictional character

 

Errol Flynn did get fired for stealing money from his workplace, but he used the money to buy a bike, not to gamble at snooker.

 

Though Flynn claimed he was tried for murder in New Guinea, there is no record of any such trial taking place.

 

Flynn did steal a girlfriend's jewels to fund a trip to New Guinea, but this took place after his movie debut.

Biopic ends with a scene recreation from Errol Flynn's movie debut In the Wake of the Bounty.

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