Film Reviews: Prehistoric Women

Mama Fisi
Mama Fisi's picture

There are times when a one-star film turns out to be better than anticipated.

The Husband and I just watched a 1967 Hammer Studios film called "Prehistoric Women," about a British safari guide in Africa who gets captured by a tribe of black men in outlandish masks who worship a white stone rhino, and will kill him for trespassing on their sacred grounds; as they ready their spears, a flash of lightning freezes them all in place, and the guide  then gets magically transported back to the time when the rhino idol was first set up, by a badass evil Amazon queen who has enslaved a tribe of fair-haired whites.

Captured again (this just isn't his day) the guide is informed by the evil queen that he is to become her plaything; he rejects her for her cruelty, and is thrust into a dungeon where the fair-haired men of the tribe are kept wallowing in filth, hate, and despair.  The old blind guy fills the newcomer in on the tribe's implausible history.

The guide develops feelings for one of the slave women, and at her urging, allows the queen (who, along with her Amazon guards, are all brunettes) to think he will become the queen's lover; later he aids the blondes in staging a rebellion. The rebellion fails, however, when the girl he actually likes has second thoughts about letting him sleep with the queen, and blurts out their plot to her.  She is condemned to be taken by the "devils of the jungle," but the guide manages to break free from the dungeon and rescue her just as one of the devils--a black tribesman in a rhino mask--arrives to claim his "bride."  The enslaved blondes attack the brunettes, a grand melee ensues, and the queen gets killed by a real white rhino. The idol shatters, fulfilling a prophesy, and the guide returns to the present, where his captors rejoice that the idol has been destroyed, and when the guide returns to the safari camp, he meets the daughter of one of his clients--who looks exactly like the blonde slave girl he rescued in the past.


This wasn't a bad film, but it wasn't a very good one, kind of a slow-paced rip-off of the Ursula Andress "She" with a generous dash of "Trader Horn."  It reused the sets and costumes from "One Million Years BC." The things I can say in its favor are that the girl playing the queen, Martine Beswick, had the lithe, seductive, yet athletic and confident walk down perfectly. The guide, Michael Latimer, was cute and had a nice voice. The costumes were interesting. The rhino looked fake.