Sandokan, la tigre de Mompracem (1963)

aka Sandokan the Great
Article 3819 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 1-18-2012
Posting Date: 1-28-2012
Directed by Umberto Lenzi
Featuring Steve Reeves, Genevieve Grad, Andrea Bosic
Country: Italy / France / Spain
What it is: Action adventure

A British Lord plots to capture a Malaysian pirate/rebel who is intent on freeing his island from British rule. He captures the pirate’s father in a hope of catching the pirate in a trap. Can the pirate escape the trap, save his father and free his people?

Once again I find myself taking issue with the classification of a movie as belonging to the fantastic genres when it really doesn’t. The only reasons I can think this one might qualify is the presence of Steve Reeves and his association with the sword-and-sandal genre, and the appearance of headhunters at one point of the proceedings; to my mind, neither of these are reasons enough. Steve Reeves’s character has no super-strength, so it can’t qualify in that regard.

Nevertheless, taken on its own terms, this is a fairly decent action/adventure flick. The presence of Reeves usually means that the movie will be made with more care and skill than others of its ilk, and this one is no exception. Even the dubbing is done with a lot more care, and that always makes a movie seem classier. All in all, it’s entertaining and well done; however, from a genre perspective, it’s too marginal.


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