Thursday, January 20, 2011
THE JUNGLE (1952). Director: William Berke.
Princess Sita (Marie Windsor), daughter of a progressive maharajah who is ill, returns to India to learn that villages are being decimated by sudden and inexplicable elephant stampedes. Rama Singh (Cesar Romero) her advisor, has hired a famous hunter Steve Bentley (Rod Cameron) to find out what's going on, but he reports that the elephants are being spooked by huge animals that appear to be prehistoric woolly mammoths or some hybrid breed thereof. The Princess and Rama, whose brother was killed by these creatures, travel to the affected areas to see if Benton's incredible story is true. "Filmed entirely in India," The Jungle offers a nice travelogue of the country along with an intermittently interesting storyline. The picture has its zany aspects, along with some clumsy editing, and so many singing natives that at times it almost seems like a musical! Presented in sepia tone.
Verdict: Not as terrible as it sounds but not so great either. **1/2.