24 May 2008 | BA_Harrison
She who must be drooled over.
Three years after their reasonably entertaining version of H. Rider Haggard's classic adventure 'She', Hammer Studios produced a sequel, 'The Vengeance of She'. Lacking the star power of the original (Ursula Andress, Peter Cushing and Bernard Cribbens are noticeable by their absence), the film is a dreary retread of events from the earlier movie, albeit with the roles reversed: this time around, it is the immortal Killikrates (John Richardson) who is pining for his long-dead love Ayeesha.
Convincing Killikrates that his soul-mate has finally been reborn in the form of a stunning European blonde named Carol (Olinka Berova), power-hungry occultist Men-Hari (Derek Godfrey) strikes a deal with the lovelorn leader: if he can successfully lure Carol to the lost African city of Kuma (using his powerful black magic), then he must be granted permission to pass through the sacred blue flame that would bring him immortality (and give him a pop at taking over the world!).
Compelled to travel to Africa by the voices in her head, the confused Carol is joined on her journey by Philip (Edward Judd), a concerned psychiatrist who is determined to ensure the beautiful young woman's safety.
On arriving at Kuma, and discovering the real reasons behind Carol's mysterious calling, Philip sets out to stop the poor girl from being brainwashed into believing she is Ayeesha, and prevent Men-hari from achieving his nefarious goal.
'The Vengeance of She' starts promisingly enough, with the sex-kittenish, mini-skirted Berova (think along the lines of Bardot, and you won't be far wrong) making quite an impression as she walks through the French countryside (accompanied by a haunting theme song), but it soon descends into a messy mish-mash of boring mystical mumbo-jumbo, lacklustre adventure, and unconvincing melodrama.
Director Cliff Owen wisely makes the most of Berova's awesome physical attributes to try and distract his audience, having her slip into clingy white robes that give viewers a tantalising glimpse of her marvellous milky puddings (please note: my workmate Phil wanted me to use that phrase in one of my comments), but even with endless gratuitous lingering shots of her semi-clad form, the film still winds up as something of a snooze-fest.