Shortly after the Civil War, while exploring the long deserted and reputedly haunted Sullivan's Island off Charleston S.C., a boy encounters two obsessed eccentrics living there. These men chase him away and warn him never to return or to tell anyone about them. Soon, however, they locate him and summon him back, because he has unknowingly given them a clue vital to their quest and they need his help to unravel the rest of the mystery. If he can do so, they will find buried pirate treasure and all become rich. But in joining the search, he falls under the same obsession and curse-- an ominous fate suggested by the unearthly electronic music which contributes to the film's atmosphere.
Paul Emmons <email@example.com>
Did You Know?
Edgar Allan Poe's original short story, published in 1843, is a first person narrative, so it is set on or before that year. In Poe's story he acknowledges that Fort Moultrie is located on Sullivan's Island and is manned and that people live on the island. The Gold Bug adaptation shown on the TV series "ABC Weekend Specials" is set in 1866 (shown in an on-screen title at 0:01:32) which places it after the US Civil War (1861-1865) and happens to be the year that the last troops in Fort Moultrie were mustered out (12/10/1866). In the adaptation, the narrator is a boy, Sullivan's Island is deserted and it is where Kidd's treasure is buried. In the original short story Kidd's treasure is buried on the mainland. This change was undoubtedly made because children would find it more believable due to the popularity of Robert Louis Stevenson's 1882 novel 'Treasure Island' (about Captain Flint's treasure) and its many movie adaptations. See more