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The Stilwins are on vacation to an isolated beach in Mexico. Walking on a deserted jetty, Doug Stilwin gets his leg trapped under one of the logs. All attempts to move the log are futile and Helen Stilwin takes the car to get help. However, an escaped criminal kidnaps her. Will she be able to return to her husband before he drowns? Written by
This was made when Barbara Stanwyck was not exactly at her prime form but she was still a major star and she still had to stay busy and pay her bills by appearing in uninspired material like this. Film starts out with Doug Stilwin (Barry Sullivan) taking his family to Mexico for a fishing trip and they head to a secluded beach area to camp. Their son Bobby (Lee Aaker) gets his shoe caught on an old pier and Doug gets him out. While getting off he falls and a piece of the pier lands on his leg and traps him. His wife Helen (Stanwyck) must take the car and find some rope because the tide is coming in! While on the road Helen meets Lawson (Ralph Meeker) who is an escaped convict and takes her hostage. She finally convinces him to take her back to the beach in exchange for sex (Not exactly implied) and to go with him. She agrees! Story sounds just like those "B" movie scripts that kicked around every studio at the time. But their is a few interesting things to notice here. Stanwyck and Meeker have more chemistry together then Sullivan has. Sullivan is so stiff and the only time that he seems to come to life is when he see's a lobster boat and he starts barking orders to Aaker and has him running around like an idiot waving a white cloth and putting more wood on the fire. But as you watch Helen in her scenes with Lawson she gives off just enough glint in her eye and uses subtle body English to make you think that she's secretly attracted to the bad boy Lawson. He's the total opposite of her husband. Meeker makes the most of his role and is always grinning like the big bad wolf. The script is strictly "B" level but the cast does their best and they do raise the material up a notch.
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