[box cover]

Sheena

Based on the 1930s comic strip — and subsequent 1950s television show — Sheena is a reworking of Edgar Rice Burrows' Tarzan with a Queen of the Jungle who lost her parents during an expedition and was raised in the darkest heart of Africa with an ability to talk to animals. For the 1984 movie, Tayna Roberts (ex-Charlie's Angel and one-time Bond girl) was cast as the irony-free blond goddess in what amounts to a pleasing but slight camp adventure as directed by John Guillermin, who did the exact same thing with his 1976 King Kong remake. Sheena is called in to action when the shaman that raised her goes to a nearby town, only to be framed for the murder of the local king. It turns out the real killer was the king's brother Otwani (Trevor Thomas). Sheena liberates the shaman from a local jail, but they are followed by journalist Vic (Ted Wass), who accidentally filmed the assassination, while Otwani's men are in pursuit as well. If one sensibility guides Guillermin's Sheena, it is an amiable goofiness. The entire cast — outside of Roberts — knows that this movie is just a bit of fluff and acts accordingly, while Roberts somehow keeps everything in line by never realizing how absurd the whole adventure is. Though both her and Wass aren't the most engaging of leads, the African scenery and well-trained animals keep things interesting. There's something for everyone: adventure for the boys, a heroine for the girls, and two Roberts shower scenes for dirty old men. Columbia TriStar's DVD release offers the film in both anamorphic widescreen (2.35:1) and pan-and-scan, with audio in Dolby 2.0 Surround. Keep-case.
—DSH



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