6.7/10
589
21 user 7 critic

The Roots of Heaven (1958)

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 »

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 2.9/10 X  

Errol Flynn , playing himself as a war correspondent, helps Fidel Castro overthrow Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista . The film was shot, with Castro's cooperation, while he was still fighting Batista.

Director: Barry Mahon
Stars: Errol Flynn, Beverly Aadland, John McKay
Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A former intelligence officer is tasked by the heir to the Gleneyre estate to investigate the unusual deaths of a disparate group of eleven men on a list.

Director: John Huston
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Robert Mitchum, Tony Curtis
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Townsend Harris is sent by President Pierce to Japan to serve as the first U.S. Consul-General to that country. Harris discovers enormous hostility to foreigners, as well as the love of a ... See full summary »

Director: John Huston
Stars: John Wayne, Eiko Ando, Sam Jaffe
Certificate: M Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

In a story set during the Hundred Years War, a student who has abandoned his studies in Paris, pairs with a young noblewoman with whom he has fallen in love.

Director: John Huston
Stars: Anjelica Huston, Assi Dayan, Anthony Higgins
Sinful Davey (1969)
Adventure | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Davey Haggart is quite certain of his paternity (even if nobody else is) and determined to emulate his father, a notorious rogue and highwayman. This includes breaking a man out of Stirling... See full summary »

Director: John Huston
Stars: John Hurt, Pamela Franklin, Nigel Davenport
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

The daughter of iconic actor John Barrymore becomes reunited with her father after a ten year estrangement and engages in his self-destructive lifestyle.

Director: Art Napoleon
Stars: Dorothy Malone, Errol Flynn, Efrem Zimbalist Jr.
Adventure | Romance | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

China Valdes joins the Cuban underground after her brother is killed by the chief of the secret police, Ariete. She meets and falls in love with American expatriate Tony Fenner. Tony ... See full summary »

Director: John Huston
Stars: Jennifer Jones, John Garfield, Pedro Armendáriz
Mister 880 (1950)
Comedy | Crime | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Gentle romantic comedy about a Secret Service Agent trying to catch a cold case counterfeiter and a United Nations translator.

Director: Edmund Goulding
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Edmund Gwenn, Dorothy McGuire
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Three men case a small town very carefully, with plans to rob the bank on the upcoming Saturday, which turns violent and deadly.

Director: Richard Fleischer
Stars: Victor Mature, Richard Egan, Stephen McNally
Gambit (1966)
Comedy | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An English cat burglar needs a Eurasian dancer's help to pull off the perfect heist, but even the most foolproof schemes have a way of backfiring.

Director: Ronald Neame
Stars: Shirley MacLaine, Michael Caine, Herbert Lom
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Cass Brown is about to marry for the second time; his first marriage, to Isabel, was annulled. But when he discovers that Isabel just had their baby, Cass kidnaps the infant to keep her ... See full summary »

Director: Sam Wood
Stars: Gary Cooper, Teresa Wright, Frank Morgan
Istanbul (1957)
Adventure | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A suspected diamond smuggler returns to Istanbul and finds the lady love he thought was dead...or does he?

Director: Joseph Pevney
Stars: Errol Flynn, Cornell Borchers, John Bentley
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Forsythe
Juliette Gréco ...
Minna (as Juliette Greco)
...
Morel
...
Abe Fields
...
Cy Sedgewick
...
Saint Denis
...
Orsini
...
Habib
André Luguet ...
Governor
Friedrich von Ledebur ...
Peer Qvist (as Friedrich Ledebur)
Edric Connor ...
Waitari
Olivier Hussenot ...
Baron
Pierre Dudan ...
Major Schölscher
Marc Doelnitz ...
De Vries
Francis De Wolff ...
Father Farque (as Francis de Wolff)
Edit

Storyline

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 <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Adventure | Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 October 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Las raíces del cielo  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

When Darryl F. Zanuck appeared as the mystery guest on What's My Line? (1950) just before this film was released, he said the temperatures during filming reached over 130 degrees in the daytime and only got down to 95 at night. The cast and crew were in French Equatorial Africa for 6 months making the movie and he vowed never to return. See more »

Quotes

Habib: Minna, my beauty. What was the message this man Morel left for me?
Minna: He said that if he caught this piece of human filth, shooting at elephants again, he would kill him.
Habib: [laughs] He's a very spirited gentleman!
Minna: He meant every word of it.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Last of Robin Hood (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Minna's Theme
(uncredited)
Music by Henri Patterson
Arranged by Malcolm Arnold
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Roots of Heaven: A muddled Script?
7 May 2002 | by (North Central Oklahoma) – See all my reviews

Have lately been reading Zolotow's Book about Billy Wilder wherein he relates the following: Wilder encountered by chance Romain Cary in John Huston's office and told him(in so many words) that he didn't think the shooting script for "Roots," was very good. Naturally, Cary was less than thrilled with this remark and riposted with several remarks of his own that were probably less than well thought out. I've always been a fan of Wilder and respected(nay, admired)most of his work; obviously feel the same about Huston and "Roots," so how does one "digest," all this,ie what's the point? No doubt, there's some problems with the script. It does have a on site improvised feel to it-when we see Errol Flynn on screen, the dysfunction's palpable-which shouldn't be all that much of a bad thing. After all, Wilder himself usually started production with most of the script still in his head, so why the problem. Probably because "Roots," is about people searching for something-if the title hadn't been retired with Robert Ruark's novel and film,also about African themes-Something of Value. Morell, one of the few in the film who's entirely clear about what's real and valuable in this life, knows that it's the animals that need protecting and conserving and sometimes not the people. Muddled perhaps? Probably, but clearly at odds with 50's era sentiment. Still, after all this time(64 maybe, since I first saw it NBC's Saturday Night at the Movies)the visual ambience holds up admirably as does Malcolm Arnold's score-as transcendent as anything he's ever written for film. I wish it were available on VHS.


8 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
not credited marty-124
the roots of heaven tippers
Flawed but... nedby
Discuss The Roots of Heaven (1958) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?