Jungle Cavalcade

1152. JUNGLE CAVALCADE (1941-USA). With FRANK BUCK. Famed, pith-helmeted wild animal hunter and explorer Frank Buck produced and appeared in several adventure documentaries in the 1930s and 40s. The first three were ‘Bring’Em Back Alive’ (released in 1932), “White Cargo” (193-4) and “Fang and Claw” (1935). Jungle Cavalcade is an ingenious compilation of their most outstanding sequences, along with some new material and narration. We initially see Buck and his native party trekking through the jungle, which is itself as forbidding as the animals who live there. It’s a teeming menagerie of wildlife and insects, at once menacing and dangerous – only place on earth where Buck is ever really at home. We observe a tiger, with more stripes on it than; pageant, pouncing on a pint-sized black leopard: the two then battle each other to the death. We meet a 30-foot python, which knows instinctively that it has no friends and who in three minutes can crush a man into a sausage. We see a giant orangutan, a monstrous brute that leads Buck in circles around the jungle before succumbing to the hunter. We watch Buck as he uses his smarts to capture and cage a zooful of birds and animals, front a deadly, maneating tiger to a cute little honey bear cub, along with various elephants, rhinoceros, pelicans, monkeys, mouse deer, gibbons, and even bats. This film will certainly be no favorite of animal rights activists, and some of Suck’s narrator is hilariously hokey (“The jungle is not a had place to work, except in spots, and most of those spots are on the leopard’ and self-serving (as Buck wrestles with a baby elephant, he brags that “bulldogging a Texas steer is nothing compared with trying to gel a half-Nelson oil an elephant”). Still, just about alt the footage is undeniably thrilling and entertaining. 77 minutes. Jungle Adventure