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The Whip Hand (1951)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Crime | 1 October 1951 (USA)
Matt Corbin, a vacationing magazine writer, takes a fishing trip to Minnesota, and stumbles across a lake in which all the fish have mysteriously died. The locals are tight-lipped about it,... See full summary »

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(screen play), (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Carla Balenda ...
Janet Keller
...
Matt Corbin
Edgar Barrier ...
Dr. Edward Keller
...
Steve Loomis
...
Dr. Wilhelm Bucholtz
Michael Steele ...
Chick
...
Molly Loomis
...
Nate Garr
Lewis Martin ...
Peterson
Frank Darien ...
Luther Adams
Olive Carey ...
Mabel Turner
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Storyline

Matt Corbin, a vacationing magazine writer, takes a fishing trip to Minnesota, and stumbles across a lake in which all the fish have mysteriously died. The locals are tight-lipped about it, but Corbin learns that a group of former-Nazis-turned-Communists have purchased a lodge on an island in the middle of the fish-killing lake, and have built some kind of laboratory. Never one to pass up a chance to sell a story to a magazine, Matt decides to investigate. His only ally is Janet Keller, the sister of the local doctor who has been caught up in whatever those nefarious Commie-Nazis are up to. What they are up to, with Soviet financing, is the development of diseases to use in bacteriological warfare against the United States, starting right there in Minnesota. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

SCIENCE HARNESSED BY MADMEN TO WIPE OUT AMERICA'S MILLIONS! [all caps] See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

1 October 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Enemy Within  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was originally shot with the bad guys conducting the germ warfare experiments as Nazis (which is why many of the characters have German names). However, producer Howard Hughes had a change of heart and decided that Communists were more of a menace than crazed Nazi scientists (it was also the height of the McCarthy "Red Scare" era) and ordered extensive re-shooting, with the villains now becoming former Nazis but current Communists. See more »

Goofs

When the Soviet officer is delivering his lecture in the opening sequence in the Kremlin, the wall map showing North America is, of course, written in Russian. However, the map shows Mexico written (transliterated from Cyrillic) as 'MEKSIKO", when in fact, in Russian the country's name is rendered 'MEKSIKA", ending with an "a". See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Matt Corbin: Guess I'm a little lost. I thought this was the road to Winnoga.
Guard: Back a mile and take the other fork.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Believe it or not, anti-Red thriller not too bad
1 June 2001 | by (Western New York) – See all my reviews

The anti-communist film was a malignant undergrowth to the noir cycle; there has probably never been such a clumsy or dispirited clump of films ever foisted on the public. Some of them, nonetheless, have their moments. The Whip Hand, directed by William Cameron Menzies, is one of these (possibly because it started as an anti-Nazi intrigue piece before then-RKO boss Howard Hughes decreed that the Commies would make better box-office in 1951, the high noon of McCarthyism). Journalist Matt Corbin (Elliott Reid) is on a solo fishing trip somewhere in northern Minnesota (probably not far from Jefty's Road House), when he conks his head. Seeking medical attention, he stumbles into a strange town where he's told to fish elsewhere, as a virus, or something, has wiped out all the fish. It's kind of like Bad Day at Black Rock, where a loner insists on solving a terrible secret despite the fact that the whole town is in on the conspiracy. He can't even get a message out, or, if he does.... A bearded Raymond Burr is an outwardly jovial innkeeper and the best actor in this curious film, which manages to generate some tension and suspense along the way.


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