The Whip Hand

The Whip Hand

William Cameron Menzies (1951)

PG Certificate


Our Score
This taut thriller may lack star names, but it is masterfully directed and designed by William Cameron Menzies. Elliott Reid plays the photojournalist on vacation in Wisconsin who stumbles on a village of unfriendly inhabitants, a lake where the fish have vanished, and a mysterious, heavily guarded lodge. The original ending involved Adolf Hitler plotting a comeback (having escaped from his Berlin bunker at the end of the Second World War), but RKO studio boss Howard Hughes, who was virulently anti-communist, opted for a Red threat instead. It is a testament to the skill of Menzies that the film still works despite the disruption of extensive reshooting.


A reporter travelling through a remote American town becomes suspicious of the locals, as well as the unexplained deaths of all the fish in a nearby lake. He investigates further in search of a story, only to stumble upon a sinister plot. Action adventure, starring Elliott Reid and Raymond Burr.

Cast & Crew

Matt Corbin Elliott Reid
Steve Loomis Raymond Burr
Janet Keller Carla Balenda
Dr Edward Keller Edgar Barrier
Dr Wilhelm Bucholtz Otto Waldis
Chick Michael Steele
Molly Loomis Lurene Tuttle
Nate Garr Peter Brocco
Director William Cameron Menzies
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Other Information

Language: EnglishBlack and whiteTheatrical distributor: RKO Radio Pictures