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Miss Robin Crusoe (1954)

Unrated | | Adventure, Comedy
A shipwrecked lass sets up housekeeping on a desert island and rescues female native from certain doom, thereby winning herself a Girl Friday.

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A shipwrecked lass sets up housekeeping on a desert island and rescues female native from certain doom, thereby winning herself a Girl Friday.

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In the annals of strange adventure none more astounding...more amazing!!!

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Adventure | Comedy

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Unrated
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Entertaining low-budget fun; Ms. Blake & Nader save it . . .
22 January 2012 | by (New York City, USA) – See all my reviews

For the past year or so, Turner Classic Movies has been digging up several forgotten obscurities that probably haven't seen the light of day since their original release dates. Such an oddity is MISS ROBIN CRUSOE, a 1954 Fox pickup shown in a pristine, beautifully Pathecolored print this morning at 6 AM. The two other reviews have gleefully pointed out this unpretentious programmer's shortcomings. In defense, I'd like to list its merits. For one, while one critic griped that the movie was obviously shot on a studio soundstage, this is untrue. Several scenes were filmed on location with the stars cavorting in front of spectacular Pacific Ocean vistas(no process shots here!). Then-newcomers Amanda Blake and George Nader could easily have sleepwalked thru the proceedings but act with such sincerity and conviction that it's no wonder both of them quickly went on to stardom: Ms. Blake on TV's legendary 20-year series "Gunsmoke", while Nader was quickly signed to a Universal-International contract (and starred in such 'A' features as "Unguarded Moment", "Away All Boats", "Four Girls in Town", "The Second Greatest Sex" and the unjustly overlooked superior second-feature "Man Afraid"--I've always been grateful to this gentleman for responding to my fan letter, at the age of 8, with a personally autographed 5x7 photo and a hand-written letter of appreciation!). Feminists could write a fascinating thesis on this gender-reversed take on Dafoe's classic novel. (The censors must have been comatose when, towards the conclusion, Ms. Blake and Nader engage in an oceanside coupling that, for pure eroticism, outdoes the similar-but-much-celebrated clinch in "From Here to Eternity" and did I detect a sapphic undertone in the scene where the female Friday gazes at and touches the sleeping Ms. Blake's body?) All of this packed into an action-packed 73-minute running time, scored by the then-unknown Elmer Bernstein. I'm by no means recommending that you go out of your way to track down "Miss Robin Crusoe" but the next time (if ever) it turns up on TCM, you might give it a try. It's certainly far more fun than the Peter O'Toole/Richard Roundtree "revisionist" version of Dafoe's tale, the godawful "Man Friday"!


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