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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

The Naked Prey (1966)



Reviews and Comments

Cornel Wilde made his name in the 1940s playing romantic, clean-cut swashbuckling heroes. There's nothing romantic or clean-cut about this latter-day work, in which he directs himself enduring a punishing ordeal in the African wilderness. Most of the film's dialogue takes place in the first few minutes: Wilde is managing an expedition for an unethical ivory hunter. When hunter insults a tribe of natives, the crew is attacked and ritualistically killed. Wilde is given some semblance of a sporting chance: he's stripped of his clothes and weapons and allowed to run for it. Already, the movie is grueling and difficult to watch, and there is more to come. Although it works as rousing action, the film is a testament to the mercilessness of nature and man's inhumanity to man.