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Leo Grainger (George Zucco) has spent the last 5 years in prison and
his wife has been killed by one of his former accomplices, but now he's
out and lives on Fog Island with his stepdaughter Gail (Sharon Douglas),
who still tries to get over the loss of her mother. Leo though figures the
best way to get over the loss of his wife and get over five years in
prison is to invite all of his former accomplices (Lionel Atwill, Jerome
Cowan, Veda Ann Borg, Jacqueline deWit, Ian Keith) to Fog Island and let
them take care of each other - which shouldn't be too difficult
because one - the murderer of his wife - is a killer anyways. But to
really make sure they all get their just desserts, Leo also sees to it
that his mansion is riddled with traps, and his guests are led to believe
he has hidden some invaluable loot somewhere in the house.
The plan of
course works beautifully, even if Leo himself is the first victim of the
killer (Lionel Atwill), but that was something he has taken into account
anyways. In the end though, all of Leo's guests are caught in a sealed of
room in the basement that is slowly flooded while they are at each others
Only Gail, against whom Leo never had anything even though she
despised him, is allowed to escape the ordeal, and with her mother's
jewellery case too, and young Jeff Kingsley (John Whitney), who came to
the island in his deceased father's stead, who had nothing to do with the
death of Leo's wife and who in the end has become romantically involved
My synopsis might make the film sound better than it
is, since Fog Island suffers a bit from PRC-typical
weaknesses like a tight budget, limited less-than-lavish sets and stagey
direction, but still, it's one of the better horror-thrillers by the
studio, thanks mainly to a great script that might be a bit convoluted and
far-fetched but still works incredibly well, and great performances by
movie-madmen George Zucco (in a very ambivalent role) and Lionel Atwill.