Watch Hell's Island
- 1 hr 24 min
Hell's Island is a 1955 film noir directed by Phil Karlson, which stars the charming John Payne as private detective Mike Cormack, who gets embroiled in a web of deceit when he travels to a remote island in the Caribbean to find a hidden fortune. The plot starts with Mike Cormack accepting a job from Louise Graham (Mary Murphy), the widow of an infamous criminal, to recover a vast sum of ill-gotten gains hidden somewhere on a tiny island. She gives him very little information except for the name of the island and an old map that does not offer much detail. She offers him a lucrative paycheck, but more importantly, the chance to prove his worth to his former love Carla. Upon arrival, Cormack finds himself in a hostile environment where the locals are not interested in the arrival of a stranger. The only person who offers any kindness is a local fisherman named Boniface (Eduardo Noriega). However, within minutes of arriving at the island, Cormack is warned by a detective, John Angerford (Francis L. Sullivan), to leave the island immediately. Despite this warning and several attempts on his life, Cormack relentlessly pursues his objective. As he delves into the investigation, he finds himself plunging deeper into a web of lies and deception. At times, he is not sure who to trust, and the trail of clues and dead bodies he leaves behind begins to attract unwanted attention. Cormackâs notoriety becomes a problem when he falls for a beautiful nightclub performer, Coral (Helena Carter). The attraction is mutual, but Cormack is wary of revealing too much of his quarry in case of report to the wrong person. Add to this equation the suspicious Dr. Rubelli (Arnold Moss), Louise's eccentric attorney, and a local official in the pocket of the gang, and Cormack finds himself in a dangerous situation. One of the most significant challenges Mike faces is deciphering the mysterious Bahamian dialect used by the island locals, who seem to possess a unique language derived from several tongues. However, it is while becoming acquainted with the dialect that he stumbles onto a key detail that may just unlock the mystery of the hidden fortune. The film's pacing is excellent, and the story briskly moves forward, with plenty of suspenseful moments and exhilarating action scenes. Payne is a commanding presence throughout the film, and his dry wit and intelligence shine as he confidently navigates the dangerous waters of this case. Murphy provides solid support as the damsel in distress, and later on, Helena Carter puts in an impressive performance as the enigmatic Coral. Overall, Hell's Island is well-executed film noir that boasts a captivating storyline with a palpable sense of danger. The film is a terrific showcase of John Payneâs abilities as an actor, and, due to the superb cinematography, there are some beautiful shots, including the breathtaking tropical location. Fans of the genre or those seeking an enjoyable and undemanding thriller will not be left disappointed.