Up 598 this week

Heart of Darkness (1993)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama  |  13 March 1994 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.8/10 from 1,391 users  
Reviews: 66 user | 6 critic

A trading company manager travels up an African river to find a missing outpost head and discovers the depth of evil in humanity's soul.



(novel), (teleplay)
0Check in

The 10 Most Immersive Worlds in Cinema

Highly immersive cinematic worlds can carry a movie, and we've rounded up the best of the best.

See the full list

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 135 titles
created 20 Oct 2012
a list of 2026 titles
created 29 Jun 2013
a list of 127 titles
created 06 Sep 2013
a list of 47 titles
created 26 May 2014

Related Items

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Heart of Darkness (TV Movie 1993)

Heart of Darkness (TV Movie 1993) on IMDb 5.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Heart of Darkness.

User Polls

Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Documentary that chronicles how Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now (1979) was plagued by extraordinary script, shooting, budget, and casting problems--nearly destroying the life and career of the celebrated director.

Directors: Fax Bahr, George Hickenlooper, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Dennis Hopper, Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Mercenary James Shannon, on a reconnaissance job to the African nation of Zangaro, is tortured and deported. He returns to lead a coup.

Director: John Irvin
Stars: Christopher Walken, Tom Berenger, Colin Blakely
Blind Chance (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Witek runs after a train. Three variations follow on how such a seemingly banal incident could influence the rest of Witek's life.

Director: Krzysztof Kieslowski
Stars: Boguslaw Linda, Tadeusz Lomnicki, Zbigniew Zapasiewicz
Two Deaths (1995)
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A tale of power, passion and obsession set in a politically torn Eastern European country.

Director: Nicolas Roeg
Stars: Sonia Braga, Patrick Malahide, Ion Caramitru
Hoffa (1992)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A film based on the story of legendary union figure Jimmy Hoffa.

Director: Danny DeVito
Stars: Jack Nicholson, Danny DeVito, Armand Assante
Cold Heaven (1991)
Drama | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

An adulterous woman's faith in God is tested when her husband dies and miraculously comes back to life.

Director: Nicolas Roeg
Stars: Theresa Russell, Mark Harmon, James Russo
Othello (1995)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The evil Iago pretends to be friend of Othello in order to manipulate him to serve his own end in the film version of this Shakespeare classic.

Director: Oliver Parker
Stars: Laurence Fishburne, Kenneth Branagh, Irène Jacob
Creepshow 2 (1987)
Comedy | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

Three more bone-chilling tales that include a vengeful wooden Native American, a monstrous blob in a lake, and a hitchhiker who wants revenge and will not die.

Director: Michael Gornick
Stars: George Kennedy, Lois Chiles, Domenick John
Salvador (1986)
Drama | History | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

An American photojournalist gets caught in a political struggle at El Salvador in 1980.

Director: Oliver Stone
Stars: James Woods, James Belushi, Michael Murphy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

A bride-to-be wakes up one morning next to a man chained to the bed, but cannot remember what happened the night before.

Director: Nicolas Roeg
Stars: Theresa Russell, Vincent D'Onofrio, Jimmy Batten

Plot unknown

Director: Roger Donaldson
Short | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  

A stoic reporter visits an abandoned trailer park to document its last resident. As the reporter approaches the trailer park, a claustrophobic atmosphere of film, analog video, and HD ... See full summary »

Directors: Florina Titz, Craig Webster
Stars: Craig Webster


Cast overview, first billed only:
Morten Faldaas ...
De Griffe
Michael Fitzgerald ...
Geoffrey Hutchings ...
The Intended
Jan Tríska ...
White Agent
Captain Fenard
Michael Cronin ...
Black Beauty


Marlow is an ambitious and adventurous sailor who is employed by an English trading company and sent to an African colony. There he travels up the river, visiting the trading stations who barters for ivory with the natives. On his journey he is told about a man named Kurtz whose station is the one furthest up the river, deep in the African jungle. Some talk of him in awe, others in admiration, but they all seem to fear him. As Marlow gets closer and closer to Kurtz he understands that the man has gone insane and is now doing the most horrible and blasphemous deeds. Based on Joseph Conrad's classic novel about greed and insanity. Written by Mattias Pettersson <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

river | jungle | greed | ivory | madness | See All (8) »




See all certifications »





Release Date:

13 March 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Maldição da Selva  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Congo River is actually hundreds of meters across and not the pitiful and barely navigable stream it is depicted as in the film. See more »


Referenced in Curb Your Enthusiasm: The Rat Dog (2007) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Extremely disappointing
4 July 2005 | by (Oklahoma) – See all my reviews

This is the first and as far as I can tell, the only completed production of "Heart of Darkness" ever released. Prior to starting on "Citizen Kane," Orson Welles shot some test footage for a version of "Heart of Darkness" that was to be filmed entirely in what would now be called "POV", where we would see everything from the point of view of the main character Charlie Marlow; he would be seen only fleetingly in mirrors, windows, water, etc. The film was never made. The "POV" technique was used, not too successfully, in 1947 in "The Lady in the Lake," with Robert Montgomery starring as Philip Marlowe. Presumably, the coincidence of the two "Marlow(e)" characters is just that. Of course, Francis Coppola's "Apocalypse Now" was based on "Heart of Darkness."

The short novel "Heart of Darkness" by the Polish-born British writer Joseph Conrad, first serialized in a British literary magazine in 1899, features one of his favorite alter egos, ship captain Charlie Marlow, who also narrates the short story "Youth" and indirectly tells the story of "Lord Jim." Marlow, temporarily out of work, decides to take a job captaining a river boat for a Belgian company involved in the brutal exploitation of the resources of King Leopold II's personal fiefdom, the cruelly misnamed Congo Free State. Marlow travels from London to Brussels, signs on with the company, and is told that his mission is to take a boat up the Congo River to a far inland station headed by one of the company's most productive agents in the colony, a German named Kurtz. Shipments of ivory, latex (for the production of rubber) and other products from Kurtz's station have ceased, and no word has come downriver from Kurtz for some time. There are rumors that he has "gone native." Marlow is to investigate, take any necessary action, and make a report on his return. He takes passage down the West African coast to the mouth of the Congo, is delayed for weeks while he is forced to repair his boat at the company station on the coast, and finally sets out upriver to find Kurtz's station. The river, the heat, the vegetation, the wildlife, the insects, the people, all take their toll on his endurance, his imagination, and his mental resources. He finds Kurtz ill, half-mad, and close to death. The final encounter and the death of Kurtz are almost an anticlimax, especially since Conrad is so obscure about what actually happens that we are left to puzzle it out for ourselves. This is a novel where you close the book vaguely dissatisfied with the ending but nevertheless treasuring the story for its amazing atmospherics.

This "Heart of Darkness" was filmed with Guyana in Central America standing in for West Africa. It is best where the novel is at its greatest disadvantage: Actually showing us First World urbanites what a boat trip up a tropical river would look like. But the rest of the film was forgettable. Tim Roth does his best as Marlow, but so much about the plot, characterizations, and character relationships has been altered beyond recognition that you wonder why they bothered. If the aim was to make Conrad's story for the screen, why didn't they leave it alone? It's unreasonable to expect that no compromises will be made when a book is made into a movie, but so many changes were made that to me had no cinematic justification that you wonder whether we are simply dealing with incompetent screenwriters and cinematographers. Most disappointing of all was John Malkovich as Kurtz. He was completely miscast and simply flubs the role. Everything about him is wrong: His looks, his acting style, his voice, his accent, everything. A vastly better choice would have been someone like Bruno Ganz (unlike Malkovich, an actual German, like the character).

This is a very disappointing production and I would recommend it only after you've read the book if you want to depend on more than your imagination to get a visual picture of a boat trip up the Congo River circa 1900.

33 of 38 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Apolcalyps Now ripoff... rparks-5
novella vs film grohlstEr
Where can I get hold of a copy of this TVM. jay_r_leo
Vote to have HoD released on DVD norockets
The Game is totally cool dreamtheater46
did anyone notice? jrobin1125
Discuss Heart of Darkness (1993) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: