Movie Article

The Caveman Club

Cavemen on film -- ''10,000 BC'' and other movies with pre-historic people

The new 10,000 BC (reviewed next issue) is the latest in a long line of cavemen-versus-creature flicks. Here are some movies that have similar DNA, if not always th same F/X dexterity.

Starring Robert Vaughn (before The Man From U.N.C.L.E.) as a nameless rebel. Favored Getup Togalike one-piece garment with single bare shoulder, belted waist, and high hemline. Foes Faced Dinosaurs (that is, stock footage of lizards with fake fins glued on), wild dogs, a big bear, and a burned, hulking bogeyman. Cultural Context Fear of nuclear war has audiences worrying about being bombed back into the Stone Age.

Starring Raquel Welch as fisherwoman Loana. Favored Getup Scanty fur-lined bikini and a shell necklace. Foes Faced Stop-motion creatures animated by Ray Harryhausen, including a giant sea turtle, a rampaging allosaurus, and a pterodactyl that carries off Loana to feed to its young. Cultural Context Dawn of man meets dawn of the sexual revolution.

Starring Victoria Vetri as escaped blond sacrificial victim Sanna. Favored Getup Barely-there animal-skin bikini, animal-tooth necklace. Foes Faced Other tribesmen who want to sacrifice her, mama dinosaur who adopts her and carries her around by her bikini bottom. Cultural Context Make love, not intertribal war.

CAVEMAN (1981)
Starring Ringo Starr as Atouk, leader of a group of outcasts. (His lunkhead compatriots include Dennis Quaid and Shelley Long.) Favored Getup Fur-pelt ensemble with boots and a cloak. Foes Faced Whimsical predatory dinosaurs that would look at home on Pee-wee's Playhouse. Cultural Context Stoner humor in the Stone Age.

Starring Daryl Hannah as tribal adoptee and proto-feminist Ayla, who wants to hunt like the menfolk. Favored Getup Burlap-sack-style knee-length dress. On special occasions, white face paint with sporty red stripes. Foes Faced A white wolf that tries to abduct a child, a huge bear, chauvinist-pig tribal elders. Cultural Context Guys can be bigoted jerks — especially Neanderthal guys.

Originally posted Mar 07, 2008 Published in issue #982 Mar 14, 2008 Order article reprints