A short thriller from the 30's that understands its limitations but tries to overcome them. It is the first adaptation from Richard Connell's short story where man becomes the prey. The buoys near an island have been readjusted to lead boats near coral reefs where they sink. Any survivors will make it to a small island where they will encounter the Russian Count Zaroff. When McCrea's character arrives at the lonely mansion-fortress, he is introduced to two other survivors from a previous ship wreck. McCrea meets the character of Wray who is suspicious of the count when two previous shipmates never return to the castle. Quite a bit of the acting is flawed and superficial, but this was one of the earliest action films with special effects. They are still beginning to explore how the film and sound mediums can be employed to their advantage. A fast paced piece that builds suspense within its narrative. While its superficiality and lack of expertise hold it back, it is groundbreaking in entering the uncharted waters of action and the philosophical question of what it would be like to be the hunted rather than the hunter; humans hunting each other. David O. Selznick produced this film for Radio Pictures.