Skip to content

River of Death (1989)

Alistair_Maclean_–_River_of_Death

While this is along way from screen adaptations of Alistair MacLean’s Guns of Navarone and Where Eagles Dare it does have that straight to VHS guilty pleasure quality with a group of aging well known faces.

river1

Released by Cannon films for the home video market it should come as no surprise that the leading role went to Michael Dudikoff. The young actor was one of their in house action stars. The film was actually produced by Harry Alan Towers and Avi Lerner. Towers gave us countless B and C films while Lerner in recent years has teamed with Stallone and company to give us the Expendables franchise.

Our film starts as WW2 is crumbling around the German forces. We have our crazed Nazi doctor played by Robert Vaughn who is about to have a falling out with SS officer Donald Pleasence. Their parting of the ways sets up the plot twenty years in the future.

1965- Amazon Jungle. Guide Michael Dudikoff is leading a group through the rain forest and goes in a little too deep. Perhaps he’s gotten to close to Robert Vaughn’s new hideaway.

river-of-death

As the sole survivor of the ill fated hiking expedition, Dudikoff finds himself in demand. Channeling the spirit of Claude Rains in Casablanca we have local police chief Herbert Lom wanting information.

herbert lom

L.Q. Jones seems to be representing an interested party in hiring Dudikoff to get back to the same general area. Turns out it’s wealthy businessman Donald Pleasence under an atrocious wig. And so the second expedition begins.

Now it’s time to borrow elements from other successful films of the day like any good exploitation film is apt to do. Dudikoff begins to give us his Martin Sheen style narration as the groups sails up the river into parts unknown. Tribes turn up along the river. Some peaceful, some not. Are you catching on?

River-of-Death-1989-1

Once mysteries begin to unravel and Dudikoff figures out who’s who, we get a flash of Indiana Jones down the stretch as Vaughn’s new Nazi paradise comes crashing down around him and those who wish to see a new Reich rising from the jungles to once again rule the world.

Directed by Steve Carver of Lone Wolf McQuade fame this is strictly a formula pic. But then those that turned up for a paycheck I am quite sure knew that all along. So anytime I can see Vaughn fence with Pleasence adding in Lom and L.Q. turning up for a shot at some Nazi gold, I am going to take a peek.

lq jones

Think about it, we’re getting to see L.Q. from the Sam Peckinpah stock company mixing it up with a member of the Blake Edwards company in Herbert Lom. That’s not an everyday opportunity.

1 Comment »

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

"DESTROY ALL FANBOYS!"

Smashing System Bias Since 1972...

Movies ala Mark

With a Cast of Thousands

Classic Horrors

From silent screen to Halloween, and everything scary in between.

IDENTIKIT

The current online container for the writer Konrad Wardh

Just Hit Play

The Good, the Bad and sometimes Ugly in film

Strother Martin Film Project

What we've got here is failure to communicate

Sophia Riley Kobacker

it's all about the story, possums...

Wolfmans Cult Film Club

Cult, B-Movies, cheesy fun films to Film Noir to classics new to me.

Talking Pulp

All things pulp and then some

cinema cities

a personal odyssey through film

Mark David Welsh

Watching the strangest movies - so you don't have to...

Scenes from the Morgue

The Lost Art of Pulp Ads: Film, Booze, Smokes & More!

Film Speech

All things film and television

Diary of A Movie Maniac

A Personal Journey Through Cinema & Television

portraitsbyjenni

My perspective on life & Classic Movie Recommendations

Statis Pro 1978 Replay

Methodically replaying every game of the 1978 baseball season!

4 Star Films

Looking deeper at the best classic movies

everythingnoir

Movies, Television, Books....Everything Noir

Chaplin-Keaton-Lloyd film locations (and more)

by John Bengtson "the great detective of silent film locations" New York Times

Sister Celluloid

Where old movies go to live

Silent-ology

Uncovering the silent era

Canadian Cinephile

"The only way to get rid of my fears is to make films about them." - Alfred Hitchcock

Noirish

The annex to John Grant's *A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Film Noir*

Cinema Monolith

Reviews of movies from my giant DVD tower, and more.

Sunset Boulevard

Writings of a Cinephile

The Bogie Film Blog

A Film by Film Affair with Humphrey Bogart

Vienna's Classic Hollywood

Vintage Hollywood films and stars

The Film Authority

You're ten seconds from watching an amazing film...

Once upon a screen...

...a classic film and TV blog

shadowsandsatin

. . where the worlds of film noir and pre-code collide . .

hitchcockmaster

Where Suspense Lives!

Tipping My Fedora

Enjoying mystery, crime and suspense in all media

Silver Screenings

An Irreverent Blog of Old Movies

monsterminions

They Don't Make 'Em Like They Used To

Comet Over Hollywood

Home for classic movie lovers

filmgeek101

classic movie views for the classic and not-so-classic movie fan

Riding the High Country

Reviews and ramblings

Speakeasy

movies galore

"DESTROY ALL FANBOYS!"

Smashing System Bias Since 1972...

Movies ala Mark

With a Cast of Thousands

Classic Horrors

From silent screen to Halloween, and everything scary in between.

IDENTIKIT

The current online container for the writer Konrad Wardh

Just Hit Play

The Good, the Bad and sometimes Ugly in film

Strother Martin Film Project

What we've got here is failure to communicate

Sophia Riley Kobacker

it's all about the story, possums...

Wolfmans Cult Film Club

Cult, B-Movies, cheesy fun films to Film Noir to classics new to me.

Talking Pulp

All things pulp and then some

cinema cities

a personal odyssey through film

Mark David Welsh

Watching the strangest movies - so you don't have to...

Scenes from the Morgue

The Lost Art of Pulp Ads: Film, Booze, Smokes & More!

Film Speech

All things film and television

Diary of A Movie Maniac

A Personal Journey Through Cinema & Television

portraitsbyjenni

My perspective on life & Classic Movie Recommendations

Statis Pro 1978 Replay

Methodically replaying every game of the 1978 baseball season!

4 Star Films

Looking deeper at the best classic movies

everythingnoir

Movies, Television, Books....Everything Noir

Chaplin-Keaton-Lloyd film locations (and more)

by John Bengtson "the great detective of silent film locations" New York Times

Sister Celluloid

Where old movies go to live

Silent-ology

Uncovering the silent era

Canadian Cinephile

"The only way to get rid of my fears is to make films about them." - Alfred Hitchcock

Noirish

The annex to John Grant's *A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Film Noir*

Cinema Monolith

Reviews of movies from my giant DVD tower, and more.

Sunset Boulevard

Writings of a Cinephile

The Bogie Film Blog

A Film by Film Affair with Humphrey Bogart

Vienna's Classic Hollywood

Vintage Hollywood films and stars

The Film Authority

You're ten seconds from watching an amazing film...

Once upon a screen...

...a classic film and TV blog

shadowsandsatin

. . where the worlds of film noir and pre-code collide . .

hitchcockmaster

Where Suspense Lives!

Tipping My Fedora

Enjoying mystery, crime and suspense in all media

Silver Screenings

An Irreverent Blog of Old Movies

monsterminions

They Don't Make 'Em Like They Used To

Comet Over Hollywood

Home for classic movie lovers

filmgeek101

classic movie views for the classic and not-so-classic movie fan

Riding the High Country

Reviews and ramblings

Speakeasy

movies galore

%d bloggers like this: