The Jewel of the Nile Review
Adventure and romance! Hands down my favorite genres.
Which is why I fell wholly and totally in love with this movie! Shout out to Elinor Cackett for her list of romantic adventure movies that led me to these jewels (pun intended hehe)!
The Jewel of the Nile is the sequel to Romancing the Stone, an 80s adventure romantic comedy/drama about a romance writer who travels to Columbia to save her sister’s life and gets entangled with a fortune-hunting scoundrel who helps her. Of course they fall in love! And of course it’s absolutely funny and adorable! I love Romancing the Stone but the sequel, The Jewel of the Nile, eclipsed first place in my heart as the sequel is just as funny, adventurous and exciting – but even more romantic.
The Jewel of the Nile starts out with Joan Wilder (our plucky, sweet romance writer) and Jack Colton (our lovely scoundrel) living the dreamy life of traveling on his sailboat. Only things aren’t so dreamy right now. Joan’s writing has hit a roadblock and she’s tired of constantly wandering. She desires to do something serious with her life – enter the Sheik (a.k.a. Joan’s serious future). He asks her to write a biography on him and the unification he’s doing in his homeland in Africa. Joan decides to go leaving Jack behind. But the Sheik is definitely not all he’s cracked up to be… and Jack follows after Joan, believing she’s in danger. Which she is. And on top of that there’s a mysterious jewel everyone’s after.
"Don't be ridiculous! Jack would never die without telling me." - Joan Wilder
Initially I didn’t know if I would like this movie as I’m not a huge fan of the “break-up” in sequels. If handled incorrectly it can be very irritating. But I felt like it was nicely handled in The Jewel of the Nile, as the “break-up” was buffered by the obvious fact that they were goo-goo eyes for each other throughout the whole movie!
And much of that charming devotion was on Jack Colton’s part! Now who doesn’t love a scoundrel?? (Princess Leia couldn’t resist one either! And in the case of Han Solo, I don’t blame her a bit). Jack Colton is a rascally, treasure-seeking, nomadic rogue who adores Joan.
"Just keep smiling. Maybe they'll think we're with National Geographic." - Jack Colton
Yeah Jack does stupid stuff (like breaking up with her when the Sheik takes her to Africa) out of stubbornness but he immediately regrets it. He’s delightfully sarcastic and irreverently enthusiastic in life or death situations. And when he looks at Joan with those heart eyes… be still my heart!
I also love Joan Wilder even more in this film than in the original film. Whereas in the original she was more naïve and reserved (as it was her first adventure, hehe), she’s grown a lot in this film. She’s not one shy of facing danger and I love it when she shows the same fearless excitement that Jack has in the crazy situations they get into. I also liked how she spoke her mind and stuck to it, even when Jack didn’t like her decisions. Of course he came around eventually – because obviously Joan is right. She’s Joan!
"She was the best time I ever had." - Jack Colton
If you love adventure, romance and delightful characters then definitely check out The Jewel of the Nile (and the original Romancing the Stone) for a great watch! Seriously, I couldn’t stop grinnig the whole way through it!
Content warning – because ‘80s ratings are different than modern ratings, I would give this film a PG-13 (you will see it rated as PG). There is a lot of language and a scene with Native women dancing with their breasts bare. Also Jack and Joan make love but nothing is shown (we see them unclothed from the waist up, but we don’t see Joan’s chest).