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A cameraman and a reporter head into the jungle searching for the missing son of a TV producer hoping to find a big story. What they get caught up in is a drug war which threatens to take their own lives.Written by
Sujit R. Varma
This was originally filmed in direct-sound English. This was very rare for Italian movies at that time, but necessary due to the large number of American actors. When Anchor Bay released the uncut version on DVD, the scenes were dubbed into Italian with English subtitles. Apparently the original soundtrack could not be located. The scenes are in Italian because the English-export edition and the Italian edition were edited with different shots. The English-export edition (released in theaters in the US) used "cleaner" versions shot at the same time as the "gorier" versions. It was not a matter of cutting down the gorier shots to make them less gory, as the producers actually filmed two different versions of the same scenes. Anchor Bay was a bit sloppy putting together its release, as one shot with Karen Black dubbed into Italian can be found in English on earlier VHS releases. See more »
During the intro titles as the camera is following the woman holding the baby, as she steps onto an escalator there is a man behind her wearing a grey T-shirt who is carrying a shoulder bag with a red strap. However as the camera shot changes to show her getting off at the end, the man is suddenly now in front and can be seen stepping off and walking ahead of her. See more »
There were 2 different versions of this film made for different markets. The first version was a straight forward action film, which was made for the US market (to get an R certificate) and for countries like the UK where censorship restrictions where problematic. However the director filmed several additional extra gory scenes for use in Italy, Japan and other countries that demanded a "stronger" version. These included alternate takes on the intro fight scene, the drug house massacre and the raid on the jungle camp, which featured additional violence nudity and gore. The US DVD by Anchor Bay is of the extra gory version, however the extra gore scenes are presented in Italian language with English sub-titles. They claim that the the extra-gory version was never dubbed into English (actually the whole film was primarily shot in English in "live" sound recording), however the Hong Kong VCD of this version was presented in English, indicating that full English language prints of this version did exist. See more »
From Ruggero Deodato, the infamous director of "Cannibal Holocaust", comes this return to gory and sadistic jungle-based goings-on. It's an interesting mixture of the Italian jungle genre (albeit without cannibalism), drug-based action pictures, and blood and guts horror. Overall, it doesn't make nearly the same impact as "Cannibal Holocaust", but it's still a solid diversion for any cult movie lover who is into this sort of thing.
Lisa Blount and Leonard Mann play reporter Fran Hudson and her cameraman Mark Ludman, who are hot on the trail of a story involving wars between competing drug cartels. They come to realize that a man named Brian Horne (Richard Lynch) is involved. It turns out Horne was a prominent associate of the notorious cult leader Jim Jones. Fran and Mark are also trying to find Tommy Allo (Willie Aames), son of their boss Bob (Richard Bright); Tommy has been prisoner to one of these cartels for some time.
As you can see, there are a fair amount of familiar American actors in this rousing bit of entertainment. Karen Black makes a "special appearance", a young Eriq La Salle plays an informant, and the legendary cult actor Michael Berryman turns up repeatedly as a relentless and REALLY nasty white henchman. His scenes tend to be the most fun. Blount doesn't look too happy to be here, and Aames is too whiny and annoying, but the rest of the cast do some good work. Sexy Valentina Forte, Deodatos' girlfriend at the time, exploitation veteran John Steiner, Barbara Magnolfi ("Suspiria"), and Ottaviano Dell'Acqua (the worm eye zombie in "Zombi 2") co-star.
One gory highlight involves a person being ripped in half. The location shooting adds a lot of atmosphere. And ever reliable Claudio Simonetti of the groups Goblin and Daemonia composed the groovy music score.
Not too memorable once it's over, but it does hold ones' attention.
Seven out of 10.
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