A stolen pistol plopping into the pool beside Dodie, former starlet, announces murder. Instead of relaxing in the Californian sunshine, she and Joe Broughton, her ex-husband with whom she is staying in his house overlooking the Pacific, set out to discover who could have killed one of his neighbours and disposed of the pistol. Dodie becomes aware of several tensions and jealousies among the neighbours. They all deny having taken it, but only one of the neighbours could have stolen the pistol on the day they are avoiding an escaped Mexican convict whose sister is a maid in a nearby house. Asking questions and testing alibis proves difficult.