review for East of Borneo on AllMovie

East of Borneo (1931)
by Hans J. Wollstein review

Although it didn't appear so at the time, East of Borneo proved a groundbreaking experience for Rose Hobart, whom Universal had imported from Broadway and then blithely dumped into this piece of B-movie drivel. Although ostensibly photographed on an expedition to Sumatra, most of the footage bears a rather striking resemblance to the Universal back lot, what with Noble Johnson and Lupita Tovar skulking about in the underbrush. Yet despite this caveat, the little film is actually good fun, if slightly on the naïve side and rather politically incorrect by modern standards. That master of the avant-garde collage, Joseph Connell got hold of some of the footage and turned it into a strangely hypnotic silent two-reeler plainly titled Rose Hobart. To the end of her life, the subject found it highly amusing that one of her worst film experiences should, in the end, prove something of a legacy.