It's 1901. At 19, tough, stubborn Christopher Leiningen came to South America and built levees to claim thousands of acres of Rio Negro river land for a chocolate plantation. Now 34, with no knowledge of women, he recruits a mail-order bride in New Orleans. She's beautiful, independent, and arrives ready to be his stalwart helpmate; however, no one has told him she's a widow. He rejects her. During the next week, as she awaits the boat to take her back to the US, they learn that legions of army ants will strike in a few days' time. She joins the fight to save the plantation; their courage and his probable loss of all he's worked for may crack his resolve to send her away. Written by
William Conrad, who plays the commissioner in this movie, played the lead role of Leiningen in the 1948 radio play, "Leiningen vs. the Ants", the original story upon which this movie was based. See more »
During the first meeting/"confrontation" between Joanna and Christopher there comes a point in the conversation when he asks her if she is 'laughing at him.' As she turns from the dresser to face him at the very upper left corner for approx. 35 frames the moving shadow of what may well be a boom mic can easily be seen as it follows the motion. See more »
This fine drama is as much about unhappy newlyweds as it is about savage soldier ants that threaten a South American plantation. The killer ants cover a wide area, sweep everything before them and naturally are headed straight for Leiningen's cocoa plantation. The dislike between bride and groom nearly upstages the approaching army of ants. Eleanor Parker and Charlton Heston make a handsome couple but she seems to be everything he is not. Parker is confident, poised and self-assured while Heston is insecure, inadequate and out of his depth in her company. Perhaps this explains why he spends so much time trying to diminish her. The film leans heavily on the verbal sparring between Parker and Heston while building tension for the showdown with Marabunta. William Conrad is good in an early role as a jungle commissioner.
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