Even though I'm a huge fan of swashbuckler films, The Spanish Main was one that took me a long time to finally get around to seeing. I went into it with low expectations, but I have to admit, it was pretty decent. Not great, but entertaining. Plus, the star was Paul Henreid, who most people know primarily from his role as Victor Laszlo in Casablanca (1942), so it was interesting to see him in this sort of role.
The film opens when a Dutch ship, captained by Laurent van Horn (Paul Henreid) is shipwrecked near the Spanish fortress town of Cartagena, governed by the slovenly, lazy, but cruel Don Juan Alvarado (Walter Slezak). Alvarado is unmoved by van Horn's honest assertion that his ship, bound for the Carolinas, was blown off-course in a storm and orders his crew to be sold into slavery. When van Horn understandably doesn't take this well, Alvarado orders him hanged. Van Horn escapes, however, and within five years, he's become one of the most feared pirates in the Caribbean, known only by the name of his ship - The Barracuda.