Curse of the Voodoo (AKA Curse of Simba) (1965)

Wow. Could this be any more offensive? It opens documentary-style with a voiceover (and a montage of booga-booga tribesmen and wild animals devouring each other) : “Africa: A country [?!] that for centuries was hidden from civilized man…Africa: where primitive people still practice evil religions which weave a dark web of death around all who sin against their gods.”

As for the plot, it’s a melodramatic tale of brash, unlikable American hunter Mike Stacey (Bryant Haliday) on safari in Africa who ignores warnings from his African guide Saidi (Dennis Alba Peters) and fellow hunters about the Simbaza tribe and proceeds to kill a lion that they worship as the god Simba. As his pal Major Lomas (Dennis Price) explains, “These people are further from civilization than Stone Age men.”

For a tribe of supposed savages, they show much restraint in throwing a spear at Mike’s feet (symbolically cursing him) rather than into his head. A cursed Mike hallucinates about lion noises, tribesmen following him, and about Saidi, who, after being hypnotized by the tribe into trying to stab Mike, has been captured and tortured by the tribesmen. Meanwhile, Mike’s doctor, friends and family think he’s either a drunkard or insane.

His wife conveniently finds an African expert (Louis Mahoney), though, who knows of the tribe and tells her how to end the curse (i.e. kill the man who cursed him). Mike goes back to Africa and “hunts” the hexing tribesman (Danny Daniels), then runs him down with his jeep and rescues Saidi. The end. The moral? If you kill someone’s god, make sure to kill that someone as well. No witnesses. Bonus head scratcher: An extended (over four minutes) scene of a black woman doing a wild, sexy, gyrating dance — mirroring the tribesmen — to Cuban-jazz (?) music in an African club.

“I smell pigment.”
Dockers: Stain-resistant
“My hat says ‘hi’.”
Tribesmen and SUVs are natural enemies.


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