29 April 2000 | kartrabo
Fairbanks Jr. always effective in dramas.
In his efforts to find interesting roles to play during his contract days at Warner Brothers Pictures Douglas Fairbanks Jr. chose the part of Fred Blake, the troubled repentant hero of W.Somerset Maugham's novel 'The Narrow Corner'. As adapted by Robert Presnell and directed by Alfred E.Green, the story has young Doug,a former playboy pressured by his wealthy father to escape a manslaughter charge in Australia until the heat is off.The young man is spirited away aboard a disreputable schooner captained by an even less reputable skipper who has been paid to keep him distant from the law and further involvement with troublesome females.But,as fate would have it,after surviving a typhoon,the little ship puts in for repairs at an island paradise peopled by Danish settlers. Through the kindness of the inhabitants and particularly by the innocence of lovely Patricia Ellis and the comraderie of Ralph Bellamy,Fairbanks Jr. begins to mature as a responsible adult.However, tragedy lurks just around the corner.
The essential philosophy and moral of novelist Maugham is retained throughout this wonderful film.In great supporting roles are Arthur Hohl as the coarse,vulgar skipper,Reginald Owen as the girl's eccentric father, and Dudley Digges as the world-weary,opium-addicted physician.The film was remade with plot differences a few years later as 'Isle of Fury' with Humphrey Bogart!