Pippi in the South Seas (1970)

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The great success of the original 13-part PIPPI LONGSTOCKING television series and the first two film spin-offs demanded further adventures for Pippi and her friends, the end result being this wonderful and lively pirate-pounding epic, which has become something of a camp cult classic. Much of the film shoot took part on Barbados in the West Indies, adding a whole new and exotic look to this swashbuckling saga. PIPPI IN THE SOUTH SEAS also benefits immensely from being a deliberately scripted film as opposed to the haphazard method utilised for the previous two films, which had been constructed from snippets of the TV episodes, cobbled together with scant regard for continuity etc. However, it seems author Astrid Lindgren had less input into this script as the story has little in common with her best-selling book of the same title.

In fact the updated storyline for PIPPI IN THE SOUTH SEAS is cracking stuff in its own right, full of inventive ideas and visuals which are compromised to a degree by the low budget and the 'special effects' technology then available. However, as usual the central trio of Inger Nilsson, Maria Persson and Pär Sundberg as Pippi, Annika and Tommy dive into the action with commendable vigour, pulling the viewer into the film with ease. This is a very physical film, with the children being required to jump into water, climb palm trees, hide inside wells, clamber up steep hillsides and even crawl inside cannon barrels! Pippi of course takes it all in her stride, but her two loyal companions also toughen up as the story progresses.

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