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In Africa, a hunter kills a great lion. The animal turns out to be sacred to a local tribe of voodoo worshipers, and when the hunter returns to England, he finds himself seeing strange apparitions involving the lion and murderous jungle warriors. Written by
This dull follow-up to producer Richard Gordon and director Lindsay Shonteff's DEVIL DOLL stars Bryant Haliday as a big game hunter in modern day Africa who bags a lion on Simbasa territory and is cursed by the tribe, who revere lions as gods. Although Haliday flees to London, he is wracked by unexplained fevers and is dogged (or is he?) by spectral Simbasa warriors who run him down on Hempstead Heath and peek in through his seedy hotel window. It's all pretty unexciting stuff; although the film begins and ends in the Dark Continent, the lion's share of the story takes place indoors - apart from a couple of exteriors and one ill-advised attempt at a "Lewton walk," where Haliday hears the growling of game cats while walking back to his hotel one night (this might have had some effect had not Shonteff overlaid Brian Fahey's bombastic score atop it, killing the atmosphere). 1965 matinee audiences must have been driven mad by this unrelentingly dull voodoo drama; seen now after the passage of thirty years, its racist underbelly destroys any possibility of enjoying the film on a kitsch level. British character actor Dennis Price brings class to the production, but he's wasted as Haliday's sage advisor.
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