07/28/2014  
Draft Day on Digital HD Aug 19, VOD Aug 29, Blu-ray Combo Sep 2Prom Night on Blu-ray and DVD Sep 9Ghostbusters & Ghostbusters II in Theaters Aug 29 & Blu-ray Sep 16Toy Story of Terror! On Blu-ray + Digital Copy, DVD, and More Aug 19The Railway Man on Early Digital Aug 1 on DVD/Blu-ray Aug 12Gangster on DVD & VOD Jul 22Spartacus: The Complete Collection on Blu-ray, Digital HD, DVD Sep 16

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Box Office Charts From Box Office Mojo Jul 24 - 26...
Draft Day on Digital HD Aug 19, VOD Aug 29, Blu-ray Com...
Prom Night on Blu-ray and DVD Sep 9...
Nick Jonas Releases 'Chains' Single ...
Ghostbusters & Ghostbusters II in Theaters Aug 29 & Blu...

JB Joseph Burke

The Answer to American Idol's Problems Is......
CONCRETE BLONDES...
CREAM FAREWELL CONCERT...
JACK REACHER...
MANBORG...

CA Chuck Aliaga

CORRUPTION (BLU-RAY)...
THE ATTACK (BLU-RAY)...
TANK GIRL (BLU-RAY)...
HORROR STORIES...
THE UNINVITED (BLU-RAY)...

RR Rich Rosell

THE GIRL...
THE HORDE...
LIFE IS SWEET (BLU-RAY)...
SHOUT AT THE DEVIL (BLU-RAY/DVD COMBO)...
THE BLUE ANGEL (BLU-RAY)...

MZ Mark Zimmer

BABY PEGGY: THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM...
STORAGE WARS: VOLUME THREE...
Take Part in a Film Restoration...
THE 39 STEPS (BLU-RAY)...
DARK SHADOWS: THE BEST OF BARNABAS...

JS Jesse Shanks

2 BROKE GIRLS...
DOWNTON ABBEY SEASONS ONE & TWO LIMITED EDITION...
FLORENCE AND THE SPIRIT OF THE RENAISSANCE...
NAZI COLLABORATORS...
KATT WILLIAMS: KATTPACALYPSE...

RJ Ross Johnson

THE LIFE AND DEATH OF COLONEL BLIMP (BLU-RAY)...
PURPLE NOON (BLU-RAY)...
WEEKEND (BLU-RAY)...
JUAN OF THE DEAD...
THE DEVIL'S NEEDLE AND OTHER TALES OF VICE AND REDEMPTI...

JD Jon Danziger

SUNSET BOULEVARD...
SALO, OR THE 120 DAYS OF SODOM...
TABLOID...
CUL-DE-SAC...
3 WOMEN...

JC Joel Cunningham

YOJIMBO/SANJURO...
SUMMER HOURS (L'heure d'ÈtÈ)...
WIZARD OF OZ...
WINGS OF DESIRE...
HORTON HEARS A WHO!...

DH Dan Heaton

REVANCHE...
LAST DAYS OF DISCO...
NIGHTS AND WEEKENDS...
STARGATE SG-1: CHILDREN OF THE GODS...
STARGATE ATLANTIS: THE COMPLETE FIFTH SEASON...

MS Matt Serafini

THE STEPFATHER...
THE HILLS RUN RED...
MANAGEMENT...
NIGHT OF DEATH...
GNAW...

KC Kevin Clemons

Freddy Got Fingered...

JU Jeff Ulmer

Secure The Second Season of The Border on DVD August 25...
THE WALTONS: THE COMPLETE 9TH SEASON...
Dance Me Outside kicks onto DVD May 6, 2008...

DD Dale Dobson

Film-Fest 4: Sundance 2000 & Hawaii...

RM Robert Mandel

Saving Private Ryan...

Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Paramount Studios presents
The Naked Jungle (1953)

Joanna: Your coffee smells much stronger than New Orleans coffee.
Christopher: It is.
Joanna: The dinner was wonderful. Very good chicken.
Christopher: It was lizard.
Joanna: The climate's very pleasant here. It's not nearly as hot as I thought it would be.
Christopher: This is winter.

- Eleanor Parker, Charlton Heston

Review By: Joel Cunningham   
Published: November 07, 2004

Stars: Eleanor Parker, Charlton Heston
Other Stars: William Conrad, Romo Vincent
Director: Byron Haskin

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (some violence, sexuality)
Run Time: 01h:35m:22s
Release Date: November 09, 2004
UPC: 097360601244
Genre: adventure


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B BB+B D-

DVD Review

The ants are on the march in The Naked Jungle, and only Charlton Heston can stop them. But the most fearsome creature in this 1954 jungle tale is Eleanor Parker, his mail-order bride and the only woman he's ever known.

B-movie maven George Pal produced this thriller, ostensibly about an unstoppable army of carnivorous ants bearing down on a remote jungle location. But really, the ants are an afterthought—they aren't mentioned until over an hour has passed, and they don't show up on screen until even later. Most of the screen time is spent on the potboiler romance between Heston, an explorer type who left home at a young age to conquer the jungle and never had time for women, and Eleanor Parker, a new bride with a secret, and an independent disposition that frightens her husband.

The script is engaging if pretty goofy, but Heston and Parker play it with dead seriousness and it works. The dialogue is surprisingly memorable—when Heston finds out his "perfect" woman has been married before, he complains he only likes new things, like his brand new, never been played piano. "If you knew anything about pianos, you'd know they're better if they've been played," she responds, speaking over the heads of the Hays Code censors. Heston has trouble dealing with her past, and her fiery spirit. At one point, he freaks out because she won't wear his special perfume, so he proceeds to dump the whole bottle onto her in a rage (the bit was reportedly a Heston improv). But she softens to him when she sees the caliber of books in his library, and doesn't believe him when he says he simply ordered them "by the pound." Nope, he's a sensitive, sexually frustrated jungle man, and she's going to stay and play his piano, even when the threat of ants looms large (a menace not seen in 20 years, a jungle guide says, and "a 40-foot-wide trail of death!").

There's nothing realistic about this adventure yarn—it's the kind of movie in which Eleanor Parker remains painted and well-pressed in the heat of the jungle, while the men spout sweat stains in the oddest places (at one point, Heston has a huge dark patch on his... stomach?)—but its got a lot of amusing touches. The sets never approach realism, no matter how overcranked the jungle soundtrack (Monkey screams? Check). The faithful South American natives who welcome Heston's oppression are treated with all the subtlety and cultural respect of a tribe of Ewoks (check out the "lo um packey fwey" made-up language), and I think George Lucas stole some bits from the film-ending ant siege for his little sci-fi movie. The ants themselves look sort of like a black scourge on a matte painting. That is, until Heston uses his trusty eyepiece from a mile away and is able to zoom in on individual ants crawling around ("They must have sent out a scout of some kind. Look, there it is!"). The insects can devour a man in seconds, but they only do so offscreen ("They must have caught him while he was drunk," Heston says after finding a freshly cleaned skeleton in a boat. He promptly forgets the incident, however, when his plan for defeating them banks heavily on the fact that he thinks ants can't travel over water.)

The Naked Jungle is essentially a big tease for Killer Insect fanatics, but if you like your bug horror with a nice slice of melodrama, look no further.

Rating for Style: B
Rating for Substance: B

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: According to the IMDb, The Naked Jungle screened at 1.75:1. I can't find evidence of that anywhere else, however, so I'm going to defer to Paramount's track record on this one and assume they know better. And it certainly looks liked it was framed in the Academy ratio, because I noticed neither tight cropping to indicate zooms nor a lot of space at the top and bottom of the frame.

In any case, this vintage Technicolor film looks quite nice on DVD. Colors have that saturated, old Hollywood feel throughout, despite a subtle "pulsing" effect that pops up here and there. Grain is consistent with a film of this vintage, and unobtrusive. The print is in great shape, and shows good detail, and blacks are suitably solid.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
MonoEnglishno


Audio Transfer Review: For the most part, the original mono mix sounds pretty good. Dialogue is clear, and sound effects come across well. The bombastic musical score sounds a bit compressed, particularly during more dramatic moments, but it works well enough.

Audio Transfer Grade: B

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 14 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
Packaging: Keep Case
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: There are, not surprisingly, no extras.

Extras Grade: D-

 

Final Comments

A corny, Saturday-afternoon-matinee-style adventure the likes of which we'll never see again from Hollywood (particularly since the box office failure of genre throwback Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow), The Naked Jungle is a charming artifact of a bygone era. A time in which the struggle of man vs. woman was trumped only by the struggle of man vs. ANTS! And the remake (currently in production... seriously) will probably star Ice Cube and J-Lo or something, so get your fill of the original while you can.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

box office, movies, drama, horror, music, nick jonas, jonas brothers, jason evigan, r&b, chains, comedy, television, donna dixon, bosom buddies, dan aykroyd, james brown biopic, get on up, saturday night live, doctor detroit, fx, fargo, martin freeman, billy bob thornton, allison tolman, animation, tca awards, breaking bad, true detective, matther mcconaughey, hbo, itunes festival 2014, september, pharrell williams, kylie minogue, maroon 5, david guetta, sam smith, blondie, beck, kasabian, movie, philip seymour hoffman, february death, cooper, tallulah, willa, mimi odonnell, james cahill jr., david friedman, action, app, james garner, maverick, the rockford files, devine secrets of the ya-ya sisterhood, 8 simple rules, the children's hour, doris day, reality, marvel comics, thor, femail, god of thunder, mjolmir, super hero, johnny winter, blues guitar player, zurich switzerland, johnny winter album, willie dixon, walter horton, sex tape, the purge: anarchy, planes: fire & rescue, dawn of the planet of the apes, documentary, soccer, world cup, germany, argentina, mario goetze, dancing with the stars, abc, cheryl burke, botox, no eating disorder, no plastic surgery

On Kindle!
On Facbook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too
Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact