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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

Tarzan and the She-Devil (1953)



Reviews and Comments

Almost was my rating half a star higher. It was an underwhelming, anti-climactic finale that let the movie down. Aside from that, this last Lex Barker Tarzan film is one of his best. Joyce MacKenzie, the fourth consecutive one-time Jane, is arguably the best of those four (though she can't hold a candle to Maureen O'Sullivan). Raymond Burr, who would later become famous as Perry Mason in the courtroom TV series, is the most vicious of the badguys. He and a villainess hit Tarzan and Jane close to home, literally. This is a very personal (and often painful) episode of the series, to its credit. The villains are strong, distinct in character, playing off each other in a competition for power. There's surprising depth here, and it makes for an engrossing show. Sure, there's a poorly executed scene where Jane flees a crocodile and a snake, but the movie scores where it counts...right up until the last five minutes, which are not terrible, but don't provide the satisfaction expected from the relatively strong build-up.

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