The Moonraker is a British swashbuckler film released in 1958 and set in the English Civil War. It was directed by David MacDonald and starred George Baker, Sylvia Syms, Marius Goring, Gary Raymond, Peter Arne, John Le Mesurier and Patrick Troughton.
The film depicts a fictionalised account of the escape of Charles II, arranged by a foppish royalist nobleman, the Earl of Dawlish, who leads a double life as a roundhead-baiting highwayman called "The Moonraker", who already has helped more than thirty royalists to escape to France.
After the Battle of Worcester at the end of the Second English Civil War, the main aim of General Oliver Cromwell (John Le Mesurier) is to capture Charles Stuart (Gary Raymond), son of the executed Charles I. However, the dashing Royalist hero nicknamed "the Moonraker" (George Baker) prepares to smuggle him to safety in France, under the noses of Cromwell's soldiers. According to the story, the hero is called "the Moonraker" after the smuggler term, Moonrakers, sometimes claimed to hide contraband in the village pond and to rake it out by moonlight.