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DANA ANDREWS & JEANNE CRAIN BACK FOR 'DUEL IN THE JUNGLE'

Dana and Jeanne under the rainbow in Duel in the Jungle YEAR: 1954
"Destiny seems to insist on throwing us together," Dana Andrews tells his STATE FAIR, MADISON AVENUE and HOT RODS TO HELL three-decade co-star in their second film, DUEL IN THE JUNGLE, an adventure where Andrews seems more a reluctant gentlemen the likes of Cary Grant than an intrepid action star: a proverbial kite in a breeze instead of a determined salmon moving upstream...

Andrews often tried to stretch beyond the limited leading man persona even when he played the leading man, so the part as a New York insurance investigator in England, about to catch a plane stateside but being called back at the last minute, fits like brand new expensive and shiny gloves. His voice is a tad higher-pitched as if sped-up while delivering witty and sophisticated one-liners: imagine if his LAURA co-star Clifton Webb were his dialect coach and there you have it.

Jeanne Crain and Dana Andrews from Duel in the Jungle
A British-produced b-movie, DUEL has three acts in three different locations: first England; then a ship to Africa during a heavy storm; then settling down (albeit far too long) in Africa itself...

Making the best scenes in transit or in-between as Dana sticks to Crain, the wife of a missing eccentric millionaire, to find out if he's really dead; at which point her phantom mother-in-law would collect the insurance...

Yet another red-herring in a filmful of red herrings to sift and sift through: But his primary target (to whom Dana's instantly attracted, for good reason) is Jeanne Crain as na├»ve newlywed, Marian. Despite wearing far too much makeup, Crain's as pretty as the prettiest picture — sophisticated, classy, down-to-earth and, ducking away from Dana's strategic advances, the complete opposite of her smitten STATE FAIR lass was to Dana's cocky newspaperman...

Dana Andrews lights up for Duel in the Jungle SCORE: ***1/2
But in this hat-tipping, movable feast as our two attractive Americans converse like polite tea-toddlers, there's a pulpy touch of intrigue with attempts at Hitchcock style suspense with a dash of Hemingway machismo, for the villain...

And if DUEL had stuck longer in England or at sea it would have flowed much better...

Within the titular African JUNGLE are random stock footage of wildlife as the actors seem all too studio-safe in front of superimposed backdrops (also a Hitchcock thing): Here's where our hero and heroine bond, and just enough for the British con artist to show his true, lethal colors. Plus he's got the higher ground on his ground, making Dana finally have to trade in his charming sophistication for a little of that WHERE THE SIDEWALK ENDS strength and agility. 
Dana Andrews & Jeanne Craig from Duel in the Jungle
Dana Andrews and not Jeanne Crain in DUEL IN THE JUNGLE
Opening Credits of "DUEL IN THE JUNGLE" with a stock footage cheetah
End credit return of the title with a great font from DUEL IN THE JUNGLE, with quotes
Dana Andrews and Jeanne Craig tour the English rain from DUEL IN THE JUNGLE
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