There are three things that initially caught my interest about this movie. First, Sam Jones. Second, the poster. Third, Jasper Carrot. Here’s my retro review of JANE AND THE LOST CITY.
Made in 1987, it was directed by Terry Marcel and starred Sam J Jones, Kristen Hughes, Jasper Carrot, Maud Adams, Graham Stark to name a few. It’s based on the comic strip by Norman Pett.
The story is:
Jane and the Colonel must journey to Africa to the lost city to retrieve the diamonds before the Nazis do. Based on the classic adult UK comic strip ‘Jane,’ especially popular during WWII for its strong pin-up elements.
The film plays out exactly as it looks, really badly, but like with my review of StarCrash, it’s so bad, it’s great fun! I have never read the comic strip, but I can guess what happens a lot…Jane’s clothes fall off, leaving her in her sexy underwear, because that happens a lot in the movie.
Why you should watch this movie.
I said there were three reasons I wanted to watch this.
Sam J Jones
Firstly, Flash Gordon is a great movie, it’s camp, it’s cheesy, the Queen score, it’s a cult classic. Sam Jones was great as Flash, even without his own voice (he was dubbed by Peter Marinker). After Flash, Sam had a falling out with the producer Dino De Laurentiis over payment and then Sam has some issues, got into drugs and philandering, but he picked himself back up. There is a documentary called Life After Flash, all about his life and it’s a great watch, he’s seems like a genuinely nice guy now.
His movies have a certain sense of cheesiness, hence why I thought Jane And The Lost City would be fun to watch and I wasn’t disappointed, his name in the movie is Jungle Jack…which pretty much sums it all up.
The DVD cover
Look at this:
Sam Jones, a blonde pin-up, snakes, guns, skulls, Amazons, a volcano…what’s not to like? All the images I saw of the movie made it look bad, so it peaked my interest. If you’re still not sure, check out the trailer:
If you don’t know who Jasper is, he was a British comedian, who is still alive but retired now. His stand up comedy was excellent and a fixture of evening TV in the UK during the 80s. His daughter is Lucy Davis, who played Dawn in The UK Office and appeared in Wonder Woman and Shaun of the Dead. He’s also known for The Detectives, where he starred with Robert Powell, better known Jesus from Jesus of Nazareth. I always remember Jasper saying about Robert:
“He started as Jesus and I’ve brought him down to my level.”
Jasper, in Jane and the Lost City is terrible! I mean awful. He’s supposed to be a German, three of them actually (he’s credited for three roles, Heinrich, Herman and Hans, and his accent goes from Birmingham, to German, to Russian. It’s hilarious, but because the movie is already so camp, it just adds to the whole thing. He knows how bad he is, but just plays it up.
Kirsten Hughes, who plays Jane, is a lovely lady and only really known for this, well apart from a The Enid Blyton Adventure Series from 1996, if you can remember that?
She spends most of her time in underwear, all matching sets and all very sexy in true pin-up style. The movie has a PG rating, so there is no nudity, it’s just very titillating.
Is this movie worth watching?
Yes, but for all the wrong reasons. It’s an Indiana Jones rip off, the acting is really cheesy, there’s lovely underwear and you can play ‘Where is Jaspers accent from?’ all the way though. It is terrible, but it’s fun. No one was taking themselves seriously, everyone is having a laugh and you can too as a viewer.
I can understand if you have never heard of it, I hadn’t until I stumbled upon it recently. I had to see it and thoroughly enjoyed it. I would talk more about the plot, but there isn’t much to say, as I said, take Raiders of the Lost Ark, replace the ark with a diamond and you’ve got it covered.