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East of Sumatra

  • Film

Time Out says

A striking opening sequence has Chandler, a ruthlessly efficient mining engineer, summarily shoot a member of his crew for turning up drunk and endangering lives on the site by playing silly games with dynamite. When the crew is packed off to prospect on a remote Pacific island, budget limitations begin to show in the terrible backdrop of rocks and jungle as their plane lands; and before too long, box-office considerations loom large in the curvaceous shape of a jungle princess disporting herself in a rock pool. The Hawksian theme nevertheless survives, sporadically taking fire in the mutually respectful relationship between Chandler and the island's king (Quinn), a man of honour and some civilisation, who has ceded the mineral rights against a promise of medical supplies for his people. When the penny-pinching head office decides to palm off some tacky trade goods instead, the jungle drums naturally begin to throb and poisoned darts to fly. It's a typical concoction, in other words, not without its moments thanks to Boetticher, with excellent performances from Chandler and Quinn.
Written by TM
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