Island in the Sun (1957)
Finished this film last week. It’s an average soaper but filmed on location in Grenada and Barbados. I’ve been yearning to visit Grenada and this film certainly helps push that dream forward. Two years ago I almost went. I contacted a bed and breakfast in the capital St. George run by a former Miss Universe from Grenada. Instead I decided to use my air miles for Australia/New Zealand that I’ll write about later.
The other beauty of the film is Harry Belafonte and Dorothy Dandridge. Belafonte makes great eye candy but his acting isn’t on par with Dandridge’s in my opinion. Originally, I never understood the appeal of Dorothy Dandridge. She is pretty in photographs but I didn’t find her a great beauty like Gene Tierney or Ava Gardner. Furthermore the only film reels I’d seen of her were from the 1940s. To my delight, Ms. Dandridge’s beauty blossomed in her 30s. This was my first Dandridge feature film viewing. Now I understand the appeal. She not only was breathtaking but talented and charismatic. She stole the film in my opinion. Her love affair with actor John Justin’s character was the most touching out of the 4 main love stories. The other couples being Belafonte/Joan Fontaine, James Mason/Patricia Owens, and Joan Collins/Stephen Boyd.
The film’s story is weak but I highly recommend it for it’s lush color cinematography and the time period. Remember this was the 1950s so this film on interracial romances and the one-drop rule (in regards to Collin’s character) was a milestone for the time although no kissing between Dandridge and Justin or Belafonte and Fontaine.