September 1914, news reaches the colony German Eastern Africa that Germany is at war, so Reverend Samuel Sayer became a hostile foreigner. German imperial troops burn down his mission; he is beaten and dies of fever. His well-educated, snobbish sister Rose Sayer buries him and leaves by the only available transport, the dilapidated river steamboat 'African Queen' of grumpy Charlie Allnut. As if a long difficult journey without any comfort weren't bad enough for such odd companions, she is determined to find a way to do their bit for the British war effort (and avenge her brother) and aims high, as God is obviously on their side: construct their own equipment, a torpedo and the converted steamboat, to take out a huge German warship, the Louisa, which is hard to find on the giant lake and first of all to reach, in fact as daunting an expedition as anyone attempted since the late adventurous explorer John Speakes, but she presses till Charlie accepts to steam up the Ulana, about to brave... Written by
"The African Queen" sank and had to be raised twice during filming of the movie. Lauren Bacall is quoted as saying, "The natives had been told to watch it and they did. They watched it sink." See more »
While shooting the first rapids, a close up of Rose shows her to be sitting with dry clothes. A distance shot shows water cascading into the Queen and all over, either a dummy in the miniature or a stunt double of Rose, nearly flattening her hat. In a return close up, Rose is still dry, especially her hat. See more »
[after travelling through the rapids]
Now that I've had a taste of it I don't wonder why you love boating.
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Opening credits prologue: GERMAN EAST AFRICA September 1914 See more »
This great classic has everything you could ask for - two fine stars who could carry the show by themselves, and a story full of adventure, drama, humor, and romance. It's a lot of fun to watch, and it is also a film you can admire for the expert way it was put together.
Bogart and Hepburn not only give great performances, they are also wonderful together, and they make the on-screen relationship between their characters believable and interesting - it's great to watch as it develops. The adventures that they find are that much more entertaining for the way that you come to care about them. The story itself is exciting, too, with a lot of ups and downs for the heroes. Topping it off are the wonderful settings, with a lot of fine shots of wild animals and jungle scenery - there is always plenty to look at, and it also sets off the action nicely.
Any one of a number of things would make "The African Queen" worth watching, and as a whole it is a terrific movie. It's a must-see for any fan of classic movies, and one that you can also enjoy watching numerous times.
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