5.8/10
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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
Otto Waldis ...
Dr. Wilhelm Bucholtz
Michael Steele ...
Chick
...
Molly Loomis
Peter Brocco ...
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:

DEATH-GERM PLOT MENACES 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

 
Hilarious
23 May 2001 | by (Pittsburgh, PA) – See all my reviews

Atrocious. The first 20 minutes or so are competent, establishing the normally reliable premise of a curious stranger stumbling upon a paranoid, hostile town. But "Bad Day At Black Rock" this isn't. At a certain point, the viewer develops the queasy feeling that the producers gave up and said "Oh to hell with it. We don't know what we're doing here. What do you say we just try to wrap things up and go bowling?" Bad performances abound, especially from "leading man" Elliott Reid (sort of a poor man's Farley Granger) who does everything except raise his eyebrow and stroke his chin whenever he puts together another piece of the puzzle. Whoever plays the pitiful old shopkeeper rather embarrassingly seems to break character a couple times. The only person who leaves any kind of favorable impression is Raymond Burr (playing a sleazy local). He hams it up entertainingly, undoubtedly aware of how awful the whole thing is.

There is one incredibly weak exchange during a supposedly suspenseful chase towards the end. Reid and his cardboard love interest are trying to escape and he inquires "Are you wearing a watch?" She answers in the affirmative. His matter of fact reply? "Good." I half expected her to fire back with "Yes. Did you comb your hair?" At another point the love interest is in a reflective mode. "I can't believe my brother's a Communist" she states sadly. I want to say that Reid responds with "Yeah, tough break huh?" but it's hard to recall. I had lost a number of brain cells by that point.

The last ten minutes of this sorry excuse for a motion picture have to be seen to be believed. Just goes to show that clunkers were indeed made back then as well. Then again it is quite unintentionally funny if one watches it in the right frame of mind.


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