SAFARI. Columbia, 1956. Victor Mature, Janet Leigh, John Justin, Roland Culver, Orlando Martins, Earl Cameron. Director: Terence Young.

SAFARI Victor Mature

   Pull out a chair and sit down a while. This movie is so filled with cliched situations and characters that if I were to list them all, you’d be here an awfully long time.

   On second thought, maybe I should only tell about the main ones, and in so doing, leave it to you decide how much time and effort you might want to spend in tracking down a copy:

    ? An expert African guide (Victor Mature) thirsts for revenge against the leader (Earl Cameron) of a gang of rebellious Mau Maus who killed his family while he was away.

    ? His license revoked for his own good, Ken Duffield is hired anyway by a wealthy hunter (Roland Culver) who is used to getting his own way and knows how to pull the right strings.

    ? Joining them on the hunt for a notorious lion is Sir Vincent’s fiancĂ©e (Janet Leigh) who used to be a showgirl but is now intent on bagging bigger game.

SAFARI Victor Mature

    ? Also on the safari is Sir Vincent’s personal assistant (John Justin), a man whose weaknesses his employer sadistically digs his knives into at every chance he gets, figuratively speaking.

   Dressed in tight-fitting jungle outfits during the day, and then in formal wear and the finest of negligees in the evening, Janet Leigh is present only as eye candy, for needing to be rescued when she wanders too far from camp, and for reawakening Victor Mature’s interest in life.

   Sir Vincent’s role is more complicated: to be an obnoxious boor of an employer whose every whim is to be obeyed, immediately, and of course you know exactly how far that’s going to get him.

   I think that about wraps it up. I hope not many animals were really shot and killed in the making of this rather mediocre movie, filmed in color on location in Kenya, or so I’m told. Quite possibly in its day it made a much greater impression.