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Monday, January 7, 2008

The Clan of the Cave Bear (1986)


At the dawn of mankind, a woman led the way

Every statuesque, beautiful blonde woman has spent more time in the company of Neanderthals than she cares to remember. Seems it's always been that way: Clan of the Cave Bear, a 1986 feature scripted by John Sayles and based on Jean Auel's bestselling novel set in prehistoric times, stars former mermaid Daryl Hannah as an intelligent Cro-Magnon woman adopted and raised by lesser-evolved Neanderthals. Berated for her brains, sexually exploited, and generally treated as uppity chattel, Hannah's character sets out for the far country to see who else is there. Eventually, she finds more Baywatch-like gods and goddesses similar to herself, including an Aryan-looking stud with whom she discovers how good sex can feel with a warm, caring, proto-human. Sayles's writing on this project is forceful but cheeky. It's hard not to laugh at a number of scenes that shouldn't, in the strictest sense, be laughed at (the use of subtitles to decipher caveman grunts and clucks may or may not be an intentional running joke), but one gets the feeling Sayles looked upon this challenge as a pop exercise instead of (as many of the book's fans would have preferred) a religious experience. Michael Chapman, ace cinematographer of Mean Streets and The Wanderers, directed with an eye toward primitive exotica and made this a terrific-looking movie. Author Auel was reportedly unhappy with the final results on screen, but the film is well worth a fascinated look. With Pamela Reed and James Remar. --Tom Keogh



Torrent : here
All subs: here

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