12-year-old Barnaby Harrison (Pat Cardi) is recently orphaned and has just inherited $5 million. He’s also trapped on the beautiful but isolated Serenity Island with his uncle (Nigel Green) – a former British Commando – who intends to kill him for the money and tells the boy so:
“You’re a charming child, Barnaby, but $5 million-charming you’re not”.
Since the murder must look like an accident, uncle suggests making a game of it and may the best man win . . .
A young girl called Chrissie (Mary Badham) is Barnaby’s only ally against the sarcastic uncle, who uses hypnotism, man-eating sharks and fire as weapons.
Barnaby runs to a police sergeant (Robert Pickering) and to Chrissie’s aunt Justine (Linda Lawson), but both refuse to believe him since he is known to have a precociously vivid imagination.
But Chrissie knows better and sweetly suggests that they kill uncle first. The children opt for poisonous toadstools and a tarantula as their weapons.
This being a comedy (allegedly), things are eventually settled pleasantly with nobody the worse for wear. It’s not very suspenseful, it’s not very funny, and it’s not particularly well-made.
The only real bright spot is the performance of gourmet crook Nigel Green who is alternately sardonic and sinister, fiendish and fastidious, debonairly planting his tongue firmly in his cheek and evil in his heart.
The Uncle (Major Kevin Harrison)
Sgt. Frank Travis