The Snows of Kilimanjaro (1952)

Approved  |   |  Adventure, Drama, Romance  |  18 December 1952 (Australia)
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 3,492 users  
Reviews: 46 user | 9 critic

Writer Harry Street reflects on his life as he lies dying from an infection while on safari in the shadow of Mount Kilamanjaro.


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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Harry Street
Cynthia Green
Countess Liz (as Hildegarde Neff)
Torin Thatcher ...
Ava Norring ...
Helene Stanley ...
Vicente Gómez ...
Guitarist (as Vicente Gomez)
Richard Allan ...
Spanish Dancer


As writer Harry Street lays gravely wounded from an African hunting accident he feverishly reflects on what he perceives as his failures at love and writing. Through his delirium he recalls his one true love Cynthia Green who he lost by his obsession for roaming the world in search of stories for his novels. Though she is dead Cynthia continues to haunt Street's thoughts. In spite of one successful novel after another, Street feels he has compromised his talent to ensure the success of his books, making him a failure in his eyes. His neglected wife Helen tends to his wounds, listens to his ranting, endures his talk of lost loves, and tries to restore in him the will to fight his illness until help arrives. Her devotion to him makes him finally realize that he is not a failure. With his realization of a chance for love and happiness with Helen, he regains his will to live. Written by E.W. DesMarais <>

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Plot Keywords:

love | writer | africa | countess | safari | See All (172) »


His Adventures . . . Like His Loves . . . Were Great and Exciting !


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Release Date:

18 December 1952 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

Ernest Hemingway's The Snows of Kilimanjaro  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The failure of the original copyright holder to renew the film's copyright resulted in it falling into public domain, meaning that virtually anyone could duplicate and sell a VHS/DVD copy of the film. Therefore, many of the versions of this film available on the market are either severely (and usually badly) edited and/or of extremely poor quality, having been duped from second- or third-generation (or more) copies of the film. See more »


At the restaurant in Spain, prior to when Harry leaves Cynthia at the table, he puts his left hand on her left arm in the long shot. In the closer shot, he is seen to take his right hand off her left arm as he stands up. See more »


Cynthia Green: [of the saxophone player] Hasn't that African got any piety at all?
See more »


Featured in Run If You Can (1987) See more »


Ain't we got Fun
Music by Richard A. Whiting
Lyrics by Ray Egan and Gus Kahn
Heard in the background during the first flashback scene
See more »

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User Reviews

Interesting Characters & Some Good Performances
3 January 2006 | by (Ohio) – See all my reviews

The interesting characters and some good performances are what keep this adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's "The Snows of Kilimanjaro" going. Many of the story details reflect the movie's source, although it has a heavier, slower tone instead of Hemingway's own economical style of writing. The scenes of hunting, bull-fighting, and combat all fit in with Hemingway's fascination with vigorous action, and the screenplay does make some use of Hemingway's 'leopard riddle', but not with any significant depth. Instead, it does have a lot of photography of African scenery and wildlife, which is good in itself.

Gregory Peck gives his usual effective performance in the lead role as Harry, a jaded writer who reflects on his past loves as he suffers through the effects of a dangerous injury. Peck fleshes out the character believably, alternating between the writer's energetic but flawed personality in the flashbacks and his increasing delirium in the present. It's a different kind of role for Peck, and he thus adapts his style somewhat from that of his more well- remembered roles.

Ava Gardner and Susan Hayward, along with Hildegarde Neff in a smaller part, portray the women in Harry's past and present. Gardner's ethereal elegance makes a nice contrast with Hayward's stronger screen persona, and Neff's characterization is a believable depiction of the unsuitable woman whom Harry finds during a time of despair.

The characters and the African atmosphere are the parts of the movie that work the best, and they make it worth seeing. It moves rather slowly, and occasionally expends screen time on less interesting material, or otherwise it might have been more compelling. It still leaves you with a thoughtful impression of its main characters.

19 of 26 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Gregory Peck jimboreynolds-960-289779
'big game' hunting, just plain killing really dcox-12
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arent they supposed to whisper... ksf-2
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