Moviemaking to DeMille was either epic or, at least, extravagant, and in the case of FOUR FRIGHTENED PEOPLE, one of the director's rare contemporary films, the focus was on the latter. Panic ensues on board a Dutch coastal steamer when passengers learn that bubonic plague has broken out.
Four of the passengers escape the doomed ship by stealing a lifeboat and heading for land. They include Colbert, a prim and proper, thickly bespectacled geography teacher from Chicago; Marshall, a rubber chemist tired of his life and his henpecking wife; Boland, the wife of a British official; and
Gargan, a brawling, adventure-seeking newsman a la Richard Harding Davis. Upon reachi...