As the country is gripped by sub-zero temperatures, what better time than to put on APOCALYPSE NOW and feel a bit sweaty under the oppressive heat of Saigon; the depiction of the primordial swamp in the far reaches of the world has never been better; it’s one of the most immersive cinema experiences available. Jungles are one of those environments that cinema likes to locate monsters such as Marlon Brando’s Kurtz, the Creature from the Black Lagoon and, the biggest of them all, King Kong, who once resided on Bradford Road. I could have filled this list with monster movies instead I’ve gone for a novelty list
AMAZON – PEOPLE WHO LIKE THIS, ALSO LIKE
1 JUNGLE BOOK (1967) Back before You Tube, DVDs or VHS we had to rely on Screen Test to provide clips of our favourite films, this Disney classic was one of the staple diet of clips and I saw Baloo eat a prickly pear many times before I actually watched the film.
2 CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST (1980) When we get round to doing that ‘found tape’ list this one is going to make an appearance, until then let put it here. This is an exploitation version of jungle madness: Kurtz cut off heads, but at least he was kind to animals …
3 FITZCARALDO (1982) Klaus Kinski is determined to knock down rubber plants in his quest to get a boat on the Amazon for the sake of opera.
4 JUNGLE FEVER (1991) While no one is swinging from vines and this isn’t one of Spike Lee’s best, there are not enough films starring Annabella Sciorra.
COULD DO WITH AN AMAZON BETTERIZER
5 TARZEN THE APE MAN (1981) Bo Derek in the nack can’t rescue this cack …
I think The Most Dangerous Game (1932) deserves a place, a sort of warm up for King Kong, if you like!
I also have a lot of time for the first two 30’s Tarzan films (Tarzan, The Ape Man and Tarzan & His Mate).
What about Carry On….Up The Jungle!?
I too have a soft spot for the 30s TARZAN films (BBC2 tea time slot), but my favourite version, for nostalgia reasons, is the Ron Ely version from the seventies.
The Carry On film is one of the worst. Frankie Howerd is too big of a presence in Carry On films, he has all the best gags, but everything else around him seems poor in comparison.
A quick Friday 3, I am supposed to be meeting Shoeless Joe for a pint:
AGUIRRE, THE WRATH OF GOD
You might think that pulling a steamship over a mountain is an achievement but I’m more impressed by how he got all those monkeys on that raft.
“He’s using da trees”
THE MOSQUITO COAST
An overlooked Harrison Ford performance, I think.
I’d forgotten about Predator … I always found its uncomfortable face difficult to watch.
What about the musical version?
Yes, what happened to those monkeys? “Aguirre, Wrath Of God” was one of the first films I bought on DVD from the Big W! those days are gone, they are not coming back!
Wilkinson’s just doesn’t have the same kudos