Millie Stope lives with her grandfather on a remote island. Her grandfather fled there for political reasons. But they're not alone. An escaped prisoner, Nicholas, is terrorizing them, and ... See full summary »
Millie Stope lives with her grandfather on a remote island. Her grandfather fled there for political reasons. But they're not alone. An escaped prisoner, Nicholas, is terrorizing them, and further more, he's interested in Mllie. John Woolfolk has lost his wife in an accident and tries to forget by sailing in his yacht aimlessly on the ocean. By chance he drops anchor in a bay of that island. He soon finds out that something is wrong on that island, and furthermore, he falls in love with Millie, who sees in him a chance to get off that island. But Nicholas has threatened her with rape and murder if she tries to escape, and he has found out about her plans... Written by
Stephan Eichenberg <email@example.com>
Hereditary phobias drive Millie (Virginia Valli)and her grandfather (Nigel De Brulier) to retreat from the world on a small deserted island off the Florida coast. There is some reference to the grandfather's exile as a self-induced political banishment but the two are so fraught with anxiety attacks that it seems implausible that they would get up the courage to ever leave their home in the first place.
In another part of the world, John Woolfolk (Frank Mayo) marries and loses his bride in the same day in an accident. He takes to the sea in his small sailing boat (tiny yacht?) with his first mate, Paul Harvard (former Keystone cop Sgt. Ford Sterling) to forget and also to avoid ever falling in love again.
Prior to John's dropping anchor in the island's bay for fresh water, an escaped homicidal maniac Iscah Nicholas (Charles A. Post) attaches himself to Millie and grandpa and basically terrorizes them both. He gets a hankering for Millie, constantly threatening her and vowing to kill her grandfather if she doesn't do his bidding which includes kissing and ultimately marriage. Millie has a wanted poster saying that Charles is an escaped murderer convicted of killing an elderly woman.
Nellie falls for john as he stays anchored in the harbor and their love blossoms even though John is still in denial. He sails away only to turn around to retrieve Millie.
Millie of course is thrilled he's back and when he finally proposes to take her away with him, she is afraid to leave. He convinces her but she is still fearful of Isach. They agree that she will steal away with grandpa before Isach is the wiser but Isach knows there is something brewing and catches Millie and Grandpa putting on their coats (in Florida?!) to leave. He kills grandpa and takes Millie up the stairs to the bedroom and ties her up.
John shows up to get Millie, gun in hand, and discovering grandpa face down on the livingroom floor, he hears noises from upstairs and goes to investigate. When he reaches the door, the gun gets knocked out of his hand and Isach jumps him in a fight to the death. Isach is twice as large as John and motivated. Meanwhile, Millie is shown squirming in the bed half clothed (for 1924).
It is quite a fight. After skirmishing their way down a steep flight of stairs and into the livingroom, John finds a knife in the struggle and manages to stick it into Isach. That at least slows the madman down enough to allow John and Millie to leave the house. Isach follows and gets knifed again. John and Millie make their way to the dock where first mate Paul is waiting and he jumps in to continue the fight while John and Millie make their getaway in a dinghy.
Once aboard the yacht, they make their plans to cast off. Somehow Isach has found a gun and from the dock, wounds Paul in the head as his comes on deck to way anchor.
Something that has always been present in this movie finally gets Isach and the castaways brave the breakers in rough seas to get away. Paul passes out from his wound and the once timid Millie finds herself navigating the breakers as John does the depth sounds. Somewhere in here Millie is able to overcome her fears and leave them behind.
What makes this film magical is the new score. I amplifies the exotic nature of this tale. Kudos to the TCM winning composer.
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