Tigrero - A Film That Was Never Made (3 stars)


(E) 75mins

Diminutive, pugnacious and legendary director Sam Fuller (The Big Red One, Pickup on South Street, Shock Corridor) returns to the Amazonian jungle where 40 years previously he had attempted to make a harsh on-location adventure film with John Wayne and Ava Gardner that would use the indigenous people. But the production stalled when studio execs reckoned the area was too dangerous.

This time he is joined by his No.1 fan, cult filmmaker Jim Jarmusch (Stranger Than Paradise, Ghost Dog). Fuller throws off anecdotes about the earlier production, his philosophy of life and muses over how much has changed in the intervening years, all with Jarmusch listening along intently in his own inimitable spaced out way. There are elements of mockumentary to Tigrero — Mika Kaurismaki (brother of Aki) has an eye for the awe-inspiring but also for the absurd. Intriguingly the ever-resourceful Fuller ended up using some of the footage he shot for his unfinished jungle epic later — check out some of the scenes from his 1963 masterpiece Shock Corridor. Minimal extras.

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