CECIL RHODES played by Walter Houston in RHODES OF Africa (1936) is another of those odes too Empire. Most of these have to do with 'The British Empire' which "the Sun never sets on" and that includes this film. These films were very popular prior to World War II and every studio participated in making them. Though curious casting of a American actor for a then British hero. No doubt to give box office clout in the U.S.A. for this British made film.
Made at 'Shepherds Bush' the film purports to show CECIL RHODES career from his taking over of the diamond business, through empire building and too his death. His main opponent as shown is 'OHM' PAUL KRUGER played by Oskar Homolka, President of the South African Republic. Reading their histories neither would be too modern eyes likable or enlighten characters. Though in their era they had many admirers and wide spread popularity. It is best to read their histories then to depend upon this film for a informative view.
As 'Empire Films' go this a minor league entry. For a British film it has none of drive and spectacle that can be found in the films of Alexander KORDA. Movies like THE DRUM (1938) or THE FOUR FEATHERS (1939) are a far better watch. From the U.S.A. you should view Paramounts THE LIVES OF A BENGAL LANCER (1935), Warner Brothers THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE (1936) or RKO's GUNGA DIN (1939). Even the minor league entry by Universal THE SUN NEVER SETS (1939) gives you better viewing value. The caveat is view these films for entertainment, for History go elsewhere.
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