Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze is a 1975 American action film starring Ron Ely as pulp hero Doc Savage. This was the last film completed by pioneering science fiction producer George Pal. It was directed by Michael Anderson, who had previously directed another big-budget adventure film, Around The World In 80 Days.
Doc Savage (Ron Ely) returns to New York City following a visit to his Arctic hideaway. He learns that his father has died under mysterious circumstances while exploring the remote interior of the Central American Republic of Hidalgo. While examining his father's personal papers, Doc finds himself the target of an assassination attempt. Doc Savage chases and corners the sniper on the nearby Eastern Cranmoor Building, but the would-be assassin loses his footing and falls to his death. Examining the body, Doc discovers that his assailant is a Native American with peculiar markings; his fingertips are red, as if dipped in blood, while his chest bears an elaborate tattoo of the ancient Mayan god Kukulcan. Returning to his penthouse headquarters, Doc finds that intruders have destroyed his father's personal papers. Vowing to solve his father's murder, Doc Savage flies to Hidalgo with "The Fabulous Five", his brain trust, at his side.
Waiting for Doc Savage's arrival is the international criminal and smuggler Captain Seas (Paul Wexler) who repeatedly attempts to kill Doc and his friends, culminating in a wild melee onboard his yacht, the Seven Seas. Meanwhile, Doc's investigation uncovers that, years ago, Professor Savage received a vast land grant in the unexplored interior of Hidalgo from the Quetzamal, a Mayan tribe that disappeared 500 years ago. However, Don Rubio Gorro (Bob Corso) of the local government informs Doc that all records to the land transaction are missing. Doc receives unexpected help from Gorro's assistant, Mona Flores (Pamela Hensley), who saw the original papers and offers to lead Doc and his friends to the land claim.
Following clues left by his father, Doc and his friends locate the hidden entrance into a valley where the lost Quetzamal tribe lives. Doc separates from the group and finds a pool of molten gold. Doc also learns that Captain Seas is using the Quetzamal natives as slave labor to extract the gold for himself. Meanwhile, Seas' men capture Mona and The Fabulous Five, and Seas unleashes the Green Death, the same airborne plague that killed Doc's father and keeps the Quetzamal tribe under his control. Doc overpowers the Captain after a protracted clash of different fighting styles and forces Seas to release his friends, whom Doc then treats with a special antidote. Seeing their leader captured, the Captain's men try to escape with the gold, but exploding dynamite causes the pool of gold to erupt, covering the henchmen, including Don Rubio Gorro, in molten metal. Freed from Captain Seas, Chief Chaac (Victor Millan) offers the gold and land grant to Doc, who replies, "I promise to continue my father's work ... his ideals. With this limitless wealth at my disposal, I shall be able to devote my life to the cause of justice."
Doc Savage returns to the United States and performs acupuncture brain surgery on Captain Seas to cure him of his criminal behavior. Later, during Christmas season, Doc Savage encounters the former supervillain, who is now a bandleader for the Salvation Army, flanked by his former paramours Adriana and Karen. Arriving back at his penthouse headquarters from shopping, Doc hears an urgent message about a new threat that could cost millions of lives. Doc Savage leaps into action and speeds to his next adventure.
- Ron Ely as Clark "Doc" Savage Jr. (pictured)
- Paul Gleason as Major Thomas J. "Long Tom" Roberts
- William Lucking as Colonel John "Renny" Renwick
- Michael Miller as Lieutenant Colonel Andrew Blodgett "Monk" Mayfair
- Eldon Quick as Professor William Harper "Johnny" Littlejohn
- Darrell Zwerling as Brigadier General Theodore Marley "Ham" Brooks
- Paul Wexler as Captain Seas
- Pamela Hensley as Mona Flores
- Bob Corso as Don Rubio Gorro
- Federico Roberto as El Presidente Don Carlos Avispa
- Janice Heiden as Adriana
- Robyn Hilton as Karen
- Victor Millan as King Chaac
- Paul Frees as Narrator (uncredited)
Other noteworthy casting included:
- Cult actor Robert Tessier as one of Captain Seas’ henchmen.
- Cult actor Michael Berryman as Juan Lopez Morales, Hidalgo's chief coroner.
- Legendary stuntman Dar Robinson as the would-be Mayan assassin.
- Carlos Rivas, who played the renegade Mayan shaman Kulkan, also appeared in episodes "The Ultimate Duel" and "Perils of Tanga" of the 1966 TV series NBC series Tarzan starring Ron Ely.
- Grace Stafford, the wife of animation producer Walter Lantz, played an elderly woman who was helped across the street by a Boy Scout near the end of the film. George Pal and Lantz were good friends, and Lantz’s most famous creation, Woody Woodpecker, often made a cameo appearance in Pal's films. Ms. Stafford provided the voice for Woody Woodpecker.