In Fort Lamy, French Equitorial Africa, idealist Morel launches a one-man campaign to preserve the African elephant from extinction, which he sees as the last remaining "roots of Heaven." ... See full summary »
In Fort Lamy, French Equitorial Africa, idealist Morel launches a one-man campaign to preserve the African elephant from extinction, which he sees as the last remaining "roots of Heaven." At first, he finds only support from Minna, hostess of the town's only night club, who is in love with him, and a derelict ex-British Army Major, Forsythe. His crusade gains momentum and he is soon surrounded by an odd assortment of characters: Cy Sedgewick, an American TV commentator who becomes impressed and rallies world-wide support; a U.S. photographer, Abe Fields, who is sent to do a picture story on Morel and stays on to follow his ideals; Saint Denis, a government aide ordered to stop Morel; Orsini, a professional ivory hunter whose vested interests aren't the same as Morel's; and Waitari, leader of a Pan-African movement who follows Morel only for the personal good it will do his own campaign. Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
And what about the people who follow you? And love you? What of us? There lots of us, thousands and thousands who would like to do what you are doing, but they haven't the courage. They are too tired, too done for. But they understand, they know what you are trying to say! Even the stupidest, like me. They think of you, they think of the elephants, then suddenly they find themselves smiling. They can't help it! We can't help it. You must go on!
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Based on a novel by Romain Gary (who was Jean Seberg's husband ;she was the star of one of his obscure works "Les Oiseaux Vont Mourir Au Pérou" ),"Roots of Heaven " is generally dismissed ,even by Huston's buffs.And nevertheless....
It was an ecological movie,at a time it was not trendy :as Nicholas Ray ,at about the same time,was filming "wind across the everglades" ,a heartfelt plea for the defense of Florida 's wildlife,Huston did the same for the elephants ,victims of the poachers .THe odd couple,who is one of Huston's recurrent features is present:Morel ,who is championing the elephants cause ,is joined by a prostitute (played by glorious actress/chanteuse Juliette Greco).
"Roots of Heaven" was a definitive improvement on "the Barbarian and the Geisha " and paved a reliable way to works to come such as "the unforgiven" , "the misfits" and the highly superior "Freud" and "Night of the Iguana" .This is an overlong movie,but even if it cannot be ranked among the director's best ,it's worth at least a watch .
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