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35 user 5 critic

White Cargo (1942)

Passed | | Adventure, Drama | 12 December 1942 (USA)
The story takes place at a British plantation in Africa where Tandelayo entices all the Brits, especially Harry Witzel.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (play) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Tondelayo
...
Harry Witzel
...
The Doctor
...
Mr. Langford
...
Skipper of the Congo Queen
...
The Reverend Dr. Roberts
...
Wilbur Ashley
...
Ted - First Mate of the Congo Queen
Leigh Whipper ...
Jim Fish
Oscar Polk ...
Umeela
...
Darby - The Doctor's Houseboy
...
Mr. Worthing
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Storyline

In Africa early in World War II, a British rubber plantation executive reminisces about his arrival in the Congo in 1910. He tells the story of a love-hate triangle involving Harry Witzel, an in-country station superintendent who'd seen it all, Langford, a new manager sent from England for a four-year stint, and Tondelayo, a siren of great beauty who desires silk and baubles. Witzel is gruff and seasoned, certain that Langford won't be able to cut it. Langford responds with determination and anger, attracted to Tondelayo because of her beauty, her wiles, and to get at Witzel. Manipulation, jealousy, revenge, and responsibility play out as alliances within the triangle shift. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"I am TONDELAYO!"

Genres:

Adventure | Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

12 December 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Mestiça  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Because of the miscegenation aspects of the play (Tondelayo was a black woman), it was on the Production Code Administraiton's "condemned" list of sources not to be considered. A big outcry was heard when the British film, based on the same sources, was released in New York in March, 1930, because it was deemed to violate the spirit of the Hays decree. MGM hired playwright Leon Gordon to adapt his play for the screen; he changed Tondelayo's parentage to half Egyptian and half Arab, and it was eventually given an approved certificate. Still, the movie was placed on the Legion of Decency's condemned list, and the film was banned in Singapore and Trinidad because of its racial implications. See more »

Goofs

The movie is takes place at a West African British colony along the Congo River. However, the Congo is in Central Africa where there are no British Colonies along the river. See more »

Quotes

The Doctor: [applies alcohol to the native's foot] Kind of stings, hey? You can imagine what it does to the lining of your stomach!
[takes another drink]
See more »

Connections

Version of White Cargo (1929) See more »

Soundtracks

Rooty-Toot, She Plays the Flute
(uncredited)
Composer unknown
Sung a cappella by Clyde Cook and Reginald Owen
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Extremely silly and campy, but not crassly so...Lamarr makes it entertaining
21 October 2010 | by (las vegas, nv) – See all my reviews

Lusty half-caste on a British-owned rubber plantation in Africa--speaking in broken English and always preceded by the tinkling of her jewelry--insinuates herself between the two badgering white foremen; she childishly pits the hotheaded adversaries against one another, winner take Tondelayo! Leon Gordon's play, an adaptation of the novel "Hell's Playground" by Ida Vera Simonton, raised enough eyebrows in the 1920s to make it a hit, but by 1942 the material was already seeming awfully trite and thin. Director Richard Thorpe doesn't even try to disguise the stage-origins, keeping his actors running from Point A to Point B in quick little mad dashes. However, despite the lack of style and finesse, Hedy Lamarr's ripened female-savage is something to see, and occasionally her lines even get intentional laughs. ** from ****


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