Tourneur’s mastery of mood and unsettling ambiguity transform a diverting jungle adventure into something resembling existential horror. Glenn Ford plays a hard-bitten political operative leading hostages played by Ann Sheridan and Zachary Scott on a treacherous mission through the Central American rainforest—envisioned as a primeval anti-paradise quivering with menace and the ever-present threat of death. Forgoing narrative drive in favor of hallucinatory visuals and doom-laden atmosphere, Appointment in Honduras is, observes Tourneur scholar Chris Fujiwara, “a rare example of a Hollywood film that offers a formal experience comparable to contemporary avant-garde art.”

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