The Naked Jungle

Synopsis: It's 1901. At 19, tough, stubborn Christopher Leiningen came to South America and built levees to claim thousands of acres of Rio Negro river land for a chocolate plantation. Now 34, with no knowledge of women, he recruits a mail-order bride in New Orleans. She's beautiful, independent, and arrives ready to be his stalwart helpmate; however, no one has told him she's a widow. He rejects her. During the next week, as she awaits the boat to take her back to the US, they learn that legions of army ants will strike in a few days' time. She joins the fight to save the plantation; their courage and his probable loss of all he's worked for may crack his resolve to send her away.
Director(s): Byron Haskin
Production: Paramount Pictures
Rotten Tomatoes:
95 min

That's a Siji bird.

Kind of rare.

You usually don't see them

this far down the river.

- Something must have scared it.

- Us, perhaps.

No, they are used to my boat.

Although the jungle doesn't often

see someone as pretty as you.

Are you flirting with me, captain?

Wouldn't dare, Mrs. Leiningen.

Very tough man, your husband.

I haven't had a chance

to ask you before,

but how well do you know

Mr. Leiningen?

I brought him upriver on this

same boat, about 15 years ago.

1886. July '86.

What kind of man is he?

I beg your pardon?

What is Mr. Leiningen like?

I thought you were his wife,

Mrs. Leiningen.

I am. But I've never seen him.

You've never seen your husband?

I know it's not polite to ask

questions, and I won't,

so I better get back to my work

before I can't stand it.

The captain's confused.

I've been asking questions

about my husband

and now it's your turn.

We're getting close

to your husband's land.

It begins just beyond that next bend.

I'd better start getting

my things together.

There's no hurry.

We won't reach his dock

until tomorrow.

- Is it that large?

- There's more to it than size.

This is another world,

Mrs. Leiningen.

Beyond that next bend, your husband

has more power than a king.

You know about me, don't you?

You haven't mentioned it

the whole trip,

but I think you know all about me.

Your name was Joanna Selby.

You're 25 years old.

You come from New Orleans.

You married Mr. Leiningen by proxy.

- You've never seen each other...

- Oh, you know a great deal.

When your part of the marriage

ceremony was performed,

Mr. Leiningen's brother

acted in his place.

When the marriage by proxy

was performed here,

I took your place.

I was very good.

I also performed the ceremony.

Well, you're almost one of the family.

Well, as commissioner

of this area for my government,

I have to know everything.

And besides,

I'm what you call nosy.

Will you be stopping off

at my husband's place?


No, I have business

further upriver I cannot delay.

- A little while ago a bird flew over us.

- Yes, I saw it.

There have been

many such birds lately.

My government wants to know

all about these birds.

Sounds very mysterious.

I hope it remains so, only a mystery.

At any rate, after tomorrow,

I will not see you again for a while.

But I wish you much joy of

our marriage to Mr. Leiningen.

Thank you. But you still haven't

told me anything about him, you know.

In a few days,

on my way downriver,

I will stop and visit you.

By then you'll know more

about Leiningen than I do.

Mr. Leiningen will probably

be here soon.

- Well, goodbye.

- Goodbye.

Thank you.

Ma'am... are very welcome here.

We are very glad you're come.

We hope to be very much

in love with you

and you be much in love with us.

We think you're very pretty.

My name is Incacha.

I'm Mr. Leiningen's

number one man.

Whatever you wish,

it is me you will ask...

Well, where is Mr. Leiningen?

Whatever you wish, it is me

you will ask. I will see it is done.

- But... But where is Mr. Leiningen?

- I am Incacha.

I'm Mr. Leiningen's

number one man.

And I'm Mr. Leiningen's

number one wife.

I expected him to meet me here.

- Where is he?

- Ma'am, he's...

He's coming from the jungle.

He's very dirty.

He does not wish to see you

like a dirty man.


You will come?

Thank you.

His name Mayi.

You want him?

- What about his family?

- Oh, they glad to lose boy.

Make plenty.



Boys, unload the things.

Give him a bath.

We give him a bath.

We give him two baths.

Your servants, madam.

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Philip Yordan

Philip Yordan (April 1, 1914 – March 24, 2003) was an American screenwriter of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s who also produced several films. He was also known as a highly regarded script doctor. Born to Polish immigrants, he earned a bachelor's degree at the University of Illinois and a law degree at Chicago-Kent College of Law. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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