You may also be interested in the book, which was written by Vincent Bugliosi, author and former California prosecutor ("Helter Skelter" encompassing the Manson murder cases of 1969).
Richard Crenna, as usual, is very good as a high-profile attorney who actually ends up defending Jennifer Jenkins, an innocent bystander, who was involved with Buck Walker, in a murder case which occurred on the South Pacific Island of Palmyra. Rachel Ward is very believable as Jennifer, and Hart Bochner plays the dark and dangerous sociopath to the hilt.
Deidre Hall and James Brolin portray Mack and Muff Graham, a semi-retired couple who sail as a vocation- (Mack enjoys it, Muff does not) The ominous incidental music and clues into the treachery of the open sea are hinted at.
The Hawaiian and South Pacific photography is quite beautiful, you can imagine yourself living in such an environment, and assimilating into it. Buck Walker, an apparent sociopath, enjoyed the high life; while he could not afford it, he found other ways to attain it.
In a sense, the Buck Walker character is similar to Charles Manson. A sociopath with a sense of entitlement, he and Jennifer sail to Palmyra on a broken down make-shift boat, but he sees Mack Graham (and his million dollar boat) as fair game. Jennifer, while friendly towards the Grahams, does not ascertain the depth of Buck's envy and capacity for violence.
Since this story took place in the late 70's, Buck and Jennifer were considered by Mack and Muff Graham to be "hippies", harmless enough, who just happened to run out of food and supplies on the desolate island of Palmyra. As it turns out, nothing could have been further from the truth.
A very interesting story which will leave you interested in the true story, and Bugliosi's book. 9/10.
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