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Sunday, November 03, 2013

J. Jim Runs Afoul Of One Million BC Lizards


Jungle Manhunt (1951) Keeps Weissmuller In The Brush For Katzman

Men in skeleton outfits and led by Lyle Talbot seek to mine diamonds out of "magma" he wrests from cave concealment. Lyle explains it all to Jungle Jim better than I could; here's where Lyle earned stiff shots for reciting such gobbly by heart. Jim horns in on principle that "trouble in the jungle is everybody's business," and part of that is locating grid ace/war hero Bob Waterfield, forced down in the jungle, but since teaching natives to hang clotheslines and build sidewalks. Yes, this Jim has a little of everything, not least "hundred foot" reptiles from One Million B.C. battling to death yet again, JJ and companions in silent witness as were Victor Mature and cave-mates twelve years before. How much would you guess Hal Roach charged for such ongoing and promiscuous use of his stock footage? Weissmuller doesn't just fight gators when underwater --- he goes looking for gators to fight underwater. Jungle Manhunt is among most engaging JJ's, which maybe says little for the others, but Columbia/Katzman took $325K in domestic rentals for their pains, a midrange figure not so high as initial Jims, but more than subsequent ones would earn.

2 Comments:

Blogger Dave K said...

Have not seen this one in years, but I think that poster art is based on a still of JJ fighting hand to claw with a guy in an iguana costume from a sequence that never made it into the released film. Imagine! Footage too cheezy even for the elastic standards of Sam Katzman! I may have relayed the story before of working at a UHF station back in the day that had standing orders (a note tacked to the wall in the film editing room!) that the crocodile fight was to be removed from all Jungle Jim features. This wasn't censorship... the same stock footage fight appeared in movie after movie, and exorcising it was the first step in editing these gems down to an hour running time!

10:48 AM  
Blogger David Simmons said...

"Jungle Jim"s were regularly shown on my old UHF station, but I missed them every chance I got.

2:45 AM  

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