Synopsis by Hal Erickson
At one time Universal's "prestige" director, James Whale had slipped off the A-list by the end of the 1930s; even so, his films remained both intriguing and entertaining. In Whale's Sinners in Paradise, an airplane bound for China cracks up during a storm and crash-lands on an uncharted South Sea island. All of the passengers, including nurse Anne Wesson (Madge Evans), fugitive criminal Robert Malone (Bruce Cabot), blonde strumpet Iris Compton (Marion Martin), crooked former senator Corey (Gene Lockhart), "radical" heiress Thelma Chase (Charlotte Wynters), munitions salesmen Honeyman (Milburn Stone) and Brand (Morgan Conway), and traveler Mrs. Sydney (Nana Bryant), survive unscathed. Forced to fend for themselves, the marooned passengers are helped along by resident beachcomber Jim Taylor (John Boles) and his servant Ping (Willie Fung). Taylor is staying on that island, hundreds of miles from the shipping lanes, for his own reasons, and won't use his boat to return the castaways to civilization -- a decision that doesn't sit well with the most mercenary members of the group, but interests Anne who, in addition to her desire to help in China, is running away from a loveless marriage. Jim is hiding from something a lot less romantic, that could threaten whatever future they might see for themselves. A remake of a silent film of the same name, Sinners in Paradise was extensively re-edited before its general release, just as Whale's previous The Road Back had been.
corruption, crash, island, killing, passenger, politician, salesperson, slice-of-life, survivor