Made with 100% pure American corn, Pal. Review sanctioned by the Fédération Internationale de Sarcasme.
Note: opinions regarded in a social rearview mirror may appear slightly inflated.

This Month's Feature:
Ursus in the Valley of the Jolly Green... in the Valley of the Lions
(1961, BW, originally shot in color)

(Also known as Ursus nella valle dei leoni.
Ooo! Sounds SEXY in Italian, doesn't it?)

Note: Links to the clip are at the bottom

"Hey...wanna see my collection of pointy hats from bad guys I've killed?"


Yen:  Good evening, or good morning....

Quikmoose:  Yes, depends on where you are coming from.

Yen:  How very transcendental!  Welcome to Dr. Yen and Quikmoose's Muck & Mire Saturday Matinee, featuring your favorite heroes and (especially) heroines in quicksand scenes. Preferably with a minimum amount of clothing on. Quikmoose and I welcome you.

Quikmoose (with a slight wave):  As do Dr. Yen and I.  We are here in our comfortably furnished, fully-loaded, and downright inspiring movie studio/screening room/karoke bar, situated somewhere between Weasel Holler, Texas, and Pitkajunka Canyon, California, to review another one of America's favorite quicksand movies...

Yen:  But enough of what you folks out there would like to see! We’re gonna take some time now to discuss the outstanding moral dilemmas posed by this show.

Quikmoose:  Excuse me?

Yen:  You know, not everybody agrees on these burning issues...

Quikmoose:  "Moral dilemmas"??  What moral dilemmas??

Yen:  It's simple, really.  Even you can understand it.  Our passion for babes in quicksand poses moral dilemmas.

Quikmoose (scratching his antlers):  Huh?  Like what?

Yen:  Well, for example, suppose you view a scene in a film or on TV of a poor, scantily clad, buxom woman sinking into deadly quicksand?  Then you go walk outside, and you impulsively grab the first woman you see and throw her into real quicksand?

Quikmoose:  So?

Yen:  But don't you see the moral dilemma? 

Quikmoose:  What, is she ugly or something?  Should I have waited for someone better looking to come along??

Yen:  Try harder... something that your conscience is telling you...

Quikmoose (brightening):  Like, it would be like polluting and littering, wouldn't it, both at once?  Those sensitive swamps!  EPA and Al Gore would be pissed, right?

Yen (rolling his eyes heavenward):  Something like that.

Quikmoose:  Actually, our clip for today poses just such an amazing moral dilemma.  I'm talking about Ursus in the Valley of the Lions, a truly awesome Hercules-rip-off starring Ed Furry.

Yen:  Don't you mean Ed Fury?

Quikmoose:  Both.  He is really furious, and he wears a furry pair of underpants during the whole movie.

Yen:  His fury is probably due to the bad dubbing from the Italian (do Italian people think we Americans actually sound like this)?

Quikmoose:  Or due to the bad tanning job on his fur underpants?

Yen:  You forgot to mention that he can't act.  So, what's the dilemma?

Quikmoose:  You know.  He and his girl, played by the voluptuous Italian actress, Moira Orfei Spagetti-os, are having a toga party, when the girl gets kidnapped by the bad Cone-head soldiers, and Ursus takes off after them, clumsily trying to ride a horse with a fur wedgey...

Yen:  The horse or Ursus?  On a technical note, for film buffs--if you look closely at the saddlebags for Ursus’ horse, you’ll notice that they’re labeled “Gucci.” This may be important later on. Any way, the bad Cone-heads, after riding around in circles, tie up the girl and throw her into the quicksand, just as Ursus canters up on his noble bovine mount...

Quikmoose:  Hey, watch it -- don't get personal!  Anyway, don't you see the dilemma?

Yen:  I see that Ed -- I mean, Ursus -- is standing around looking like he missed the last ten rest-stops on the old Via Appia bypass; while the head bad guy, looking for all the world like Marcello Mastroianni with a metal haircut and lip/voice synchronization problems, orders his soldiers to let the girl down into the quicksand. At least I think he orders this...the dub on my copy is so bad that the dialogue that goes with his lip movements comes thirteen minutes later, in the third reel. Any way, looks like our lovely little Salerno lass is at the end of her rope!

Quikmoose:  Exactly!  Ursus has a moral dilemma.  Should he beat the crap out of the Cone-heads?  Or should he save his girlfriend?  Or should he jump in with her and have a little canoodiling in the pudding, so to speak? I know what I would do!

Yen:  Well, me too!  But this is Hollywood, and so he just stands there and chafes his butt with his fur bikini briefs while his main squeeze goes down for the count. You know, if Ursus DID jump into the bog with Eye-tye babe Moira, they could play some Pony Express!

Quikmoose (curious):  What's Pony Express?

Yen:  That's like playing Post Office, with a little more horsing around...

Moose (groaning):  But wouldn't Ursus still be "on the ropes"??

Yen (groaning in turn):  Enough of that!!

Quikmoose:  Moira does a truly great job on the way down, though!!  She moans and whimpers and screams and looks beseechingly all over the place. Some viewers describe her emotions as really, secretly LIKING the stuff! Of course, the Hollywood Morals Code strictly forbids women who like dying in quicksand to be depicted in films.

Yen:  Fortunately, this was made in Italy.  I wonder what footage they showed in Europe that didn't make the cut when coming across the Atlantic?? Whoooweeeeeee!  You should also point out that she wears a pretty decent toga, cinched at the waist, in this quicksand sequence; but later in the film, slinking around the palace harem, she wears an outrageous white, strapless cocktail dress with a Venus push-up bra.

Quikmoose:  Mama mia!  That's a spicy a-meatball...

Yen:  She also does a very nice nude swim -- unfortunately, the tide stays in.

Quikmoose:  Yep, that is the one really disappointing part of the quicksand sequence, in my view.  It is a long, loving sequence; Moira emotes well; and she is really beautiful, with long, lovely Italian hair.  But she is just wearing too many clothes.  She should have been sinking in that later palace outfit.  Talk about Greeks baring gifts!! -- would have been wonderful to watch the gook flowing down her cleavage.

Yen:  Like the Grand Canyon filling with primal ooze! Speaking of which, how do you rate this quicksand?

Quikmoose:  I must say, this very very good Hollywood quicksand, folks. I rate it very high, almost a ten on our carefully calibrated scale of Hollywood quicksandy-ness.

Dr. Yen:  That's about the highest rating we have gotten to so far.  The bog is well-landscaped to show pools of water and low bushes interspersed with the quicksand, like a Japanese Zen garden with no bottom.

Quikmoose:  And it looks really good and thick as it sloooooooooooowwwly swallows her up.  No water, and plenty of oozing about. Wow! Definitely looks inviting and dangerous at the same time. This is the REAL stuff, gang!

Dr. Yen:  I would agree. It could have used more loud sucking sound effects, though. Still, visual-wise and certainly, babe-wise, this really does rate right up there as one of the better Hollywood quicksand scenes all the way around, and it took those horny Italians to make it...

Quikmoose:  Like the one I like!???

Yen:  What?  What one that you like?

Quikmoose:  You know.  The scene I really like.  The one with Gordon Scott...

Yen:  Oh, you mean Tarzan's Hidden Jungle?

(At this, Quikmoose stands up, his eyes glaze over, his tongue falls out of his mouth to the floor, and he keels over.  Dr. Yen slaps his forehead.  He walks offstage, kicking the wires out of his way, and then returns wheeling a large automobile battery on a dolly.  Grumbling, he pulls on large, insulated rubber gloves, attaches the two electrode wires to Quikmoose's two antlers, and turns on the battery.)

Quikmoose:  Help!  Help!  I'm sinking in quicksand, and Jack Elam is being stepped on by an elephant-foot umbrella holder.....!!!

Yen:   Wake up, you idiot!  You always do this!!  What's the matter with you?!

Quikmoose (looking around):  Nurse Vera?  Is that you?

Dr. Yen:  Sorry folks, looks like our moral dilemmas discussion will have to hold until next month.  Or longer.  In the meantime, I will look around and see if Quikmoose has ANY morals.

Quikmoose:   That's right.....Until next time, be steady!

Yen:  Don't do anything I wouldn't do! 

Quikmoose:  Early to bed and early to rise!

Yen:  And, as always....

Quikmoose:  Here we go...

Both together:   ON WITH THE SHOW!!


Look! INFOGRAPHIC! Just like you see in USA TODAY!!!

Mostly water...not even dirty water! Dirty water, with one or two grains of muddy sand per cubic foot. Grass clippings floating on water. And not much grass, either! Lots more leaves and grass and stuff. Pretty dry, though. Actual quicksand. Maybe not great quicksand, but at least there's quicksand. Better, muddier quicksand. Quicksand that's so good looking that you actually wanna play in it! Good looking stuff! Small dead things floating on surface add realisim. You're frantically trying to get the VCR to work. Bingo! Oscar winner!
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