Lt. Robin Crusoe, USN Children's/Comedy 1966
Lt. Robin Crusoe, USN
This popular Walt Disney comedy is about a US Navy pilot who becomes a modern-day Robinson Crusoe. Lt. Robin Crusoe(Dick Van Dyke) is a pilot onboard an aircraft carrier in the South Pacific. When his plane crashes at sea, he must cling to a liferaft, with only a condescending survival manual as "company", until he lands on a lush deserted tropical island. Like that other Crusoe, he learns to acquire food and shelter and survive on the island. While exploring the island he finds a space-age trained chimpanzee named Floyd, who has also been marooned on the island, and the chimp becomes Robin's drinking and poker buddy, golf partner, and best friend on the island. Things become considerately more interesting for Robin when he encounters a beautiful native girl Wednesday(Nancy Kwan). Although at first she seems a bit wild and dangerous, Robin eventually gains her trust. Wednesday is the daughter of a cruel tribal chief Tanamashu(Akim Tamiroff), who has exiled her to the island for refusing to wed the man of his choice. Robin teaches her that she need not submit to her father's arranged marriage, because "all women have rights." When Wednesday's female cousins and friends arrive on the island, who were also exiled for their independent thinking, Robin organizes them into an all-woman army to force the overthrow of the evil Tanamashu. The ever popular Dick Van Dyke shows his talent with ad-libbing and physical humor that made him a Disney mainstay. Nancy Kwan turns in a nice comic performance, especially in the "charades" scene. Despite the film's disappointing ending, it is great fun to watch Robin slowly fall under Wednesday's irresistable spell.
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