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 revenge 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
Jack Cardiff, director of photography said of the location 'We were supposed to make the film in Uganda but John Huston went on a recce and sent a message back to producer John Woolf saying that he didn't like the locations and he disappeared for about 2 weeks. We then got a cable saying that he'd found a wonderful place in the Belgian Congo, It was a ghastly location in the wilds of the Congo 2 days drive from Stanleyville but it was what John wanted and would never be talked out of anything he'd set his mind on'. See more »
When Allnut goes underwater to check the propeller, the water lifts up the back of Humphrey Bogart's toupee, revealing his bald pate. See more »
It's a great thing to have a lady aboard with clean habits. It sets the man a good example. A man alone, he gets to living like a hog.
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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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