Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, March 30, 2017


VALLEY OF HEADHUNTERS (1953). Director: William Berke.

"The jungle has boiled over into one of the ugliest messes I've ever seen." -- Lt. Barry.

Jungle Jim (Johnny Weissmuller) attends the trial of nasty native M'Gono (Vince Townsend Jr.), but the latter gets off due to the skills of his lawyer, Arco (Robert Foulk). Arco has come up with a plan to turn the peaceful River Valley back into the "valley of the headhunters" by hiring men to raid villages and pretend to be headhunters. This way, Arco figures he will be free to get at the oil reserves in the valley. He also has women kidnapped to serve as slaves. Naturally, with the aid of Lt. Barry (Steven Ritch of The Werewolf) and Ellen Shaw (Christine Larsen), as well as some friendly natives, Jungle Jim will rout Arco and his evil henchmen. Lots of smooching goes on in this movie between the lieutenant and Ellen, but poor Jungle Jim gets no lovin' at all, except maybe from Tamba, who in one funny sequence gets drunk on ether. Fair to middling Jungle Jim.

Verdict: Well, there's always Tamba. **.


angelman66 said...

Bill, I had no idea until your blog that Weissmuller played this variation on Tarzan for so long! Typecasting may limit your creative expression, but at least you are guaranteed a paycheck if you excel at something! You gotta have a gimmick!

William said...

Well-said! Poor Weissmuller basically played a variation of the same role over and over and over again.

And then did it all over again for television before calling it quits.