Having been diagnosed with an incurable disease, Joe quits his dehumanising job, and accepts an offer from Graynamore to briefly ‘live like a king, die like a man’ but to fulfill his agreement he must willingly jump into a live volcano on the island of Waponi Woo in order to appease the volcano god – the island is rich in a rare mineral but is inhabited by natives who must be placated by a human sacrifice for their volcano.
En route to the island, Joe meets a series of interesting characters in NYC and LA, then boards a yacht, captained by Patricia Graynamore. During the voyage Joe and Patricia survive disaster, fall in love, and finally arrive at the island where they face their destiny.
Meg Ryan got to play down-trodden secretary DeDe as well as sisters Angelica and Patricia Graynamore in this early collaboration with Tom Hanks.
An under-rated movie with what Roger Ebert described as ‘a kind of magnificent goofiness’ – ‘only in this movie could jumping into a volcano be considered risking fate, rather than certain death’. And it avoids the cloying sentimentality that mars the better-known Sleepless in Seattle.
Leonard Engelman was responsible for Meg’s makeup.