Hailing from that circa-1930 sub-genre of "misunderstood women forced into wayward lifestyles", this Pre-Code oddity is quite a find, turning everything arbitrary and hard to swallow about melodrama into something electrifyingly sordid. Note the stiff early talkie atmosphere and robust camera movement, as the world of the film comes off as uncanny instead of real. Thanks to the Castro's Pre-Code fest for showing it.
Melodrama at its best. William A. Wellman films the Caribbean as if he were a local and Dorothy Mackaill made it directly to the number one spot on my "I have to see their whole filmography right now" list of actresses. Masterpiece.
Une superbe oeuvre mélodramatique pour laquelle on dépassera facilement les évidentes invraisemblances scénaristiques, pour ne garder qu'une magnifique dramaturgie fataliste, sans cesse renforcée par une superbe image en noir et blanc, concoctée par l'efficace et prestigieux cameraman Sidney Hickox, et rehaussée par la lumineuse beauté de l'actrice principale, la pétulante Dorothy Mackaill...
To all you ladies out there who think that men are nothing more than lecherous scum, this is the movie for you. It's more realistic than I'd like to admit. It's also directed by one of the most underrated directors of all time, William Wellman.