The Banos has exploded and sunk at sea, but another freighter, also called the Banos, is now loading at a South American port, under the command of a man known as 'Captain Scarface'. On shore at the Los Rios Hotel, a number of passengers are waiting to board the ship. Sam Wilton is in trouble, and needs to get back to the USA quickly. Ilse Yeager is waiting to be reunited with her father, who arrives with Mr. Kroll, an associate of Captain Scarface. A man named Clegg, who has just completed some work for the captain, also arrives and demands money from Kroll. Meanwhile, the captain is expecting Dr. Yeager, whom he plans to force into helping him on a mission of destruction. Written by
A Communist plot to destroy the Panama canal sees a number of passengers join forces in an attempt to overthrow the crew of a ship carrying an atom bomb en route, while an eminent doctor aboard the ship is blackmailed into activating the missile or risk the murder of his daughter.
The dialogue is a bit juvenile, and MacLane seems to be hamming it up as the crooked captain, nicknamed "Scarface" for obvious reasons, who smokes a durry like the Penguin and will do anything to honour mother Russia. Erickson is the opportunist who stumbles upon the plot while attempting to escape South America for a relatively minor (by comparison) feud with a local kingpin. Grey is simply wasted, with little to do except wallow in her cabin aboard the doomed ship of "Captain Scarface".
The villains are simply described as 'Communists', political jingoism and highly appropriate for 1953, but the film is little more than a B-grade quickie, peddling an array of hokey plot contrivances for a 69 minute back-slapping exercise devoted to subduing a red threat. Hastily resolved, there's very little action of which to speak and despite attempts at intrigue, it's pretty dull an uninspired.
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