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A shipwreck near the Solomon Islands leaves San Franciscan Cyril Darrell and his daughter Nancy adrift in a lifeboat. Cyril McVeagh, a ship's captain reduced to drunkenness and brutality by his shattered love affair with Nancy, rules one of the islands, accompanied only by his deranged mate "Pearly" Gates and the island's natives. McVeagh is about to marry Liana, a native who loves him but is desired by Gates, when Nancy arrives on the island, horrified at McVeagh's dissipation. Tanarka, Liana's former betrothed, leads a native rebellion against McVeagh, who sends Nancy away in a boat before the attack. McVeagh struggles with his crazed mate in his burning shack before Gates recovers his reason and the two hurriedly leave the island. Liana, believing McVeagh dead, remains behind to mourn him, while McVeagh sets a course for San Francisco and civilization.