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In Desert and Wilderness (2001)
"W pustyni i w puszczy" (original title)

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Ratings: 5.2/10 from 455 users  
Reviews: 2 user | 1 critic

Two young children, 14-year-old Stas and 8-year-old Nel, are kidnapped for ransom by Muslim leader called Mahdi.



, (novel)
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In Desert and Wilderness (TV Mini-Series 2002)
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Two kids are kidnapped by Arabic fundamentalists in XIXth century Africa.

Stars: Adam Fidusiewicz, Konrad Imiela, Mzwandile Ngubeni


Credited cast:
Adam Fidusiewicz ...
Karolina Sawka ...
Andrzej Strzelecki ...
Krzysztof Kowalewski ...
Agnieszka Pilaszewska ...
Krzysztof Kolberger ...
Konrad Imiela ...
Lingile Shongwe ...
Mzwandile Ngubeni ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jacek Rozenek ...
Przemyslaw Sadowski ...
Army officer
Daria Trafankowska ...
Dinah (voice)
Marek Wlodarczyk ...


When 15 year old Stas Tarkowski and 9 year old Nel Rawlinson are kidnapped by rebels fighting for the great Arab leader - the Mahdi - their fathers desperately organize a search party. But the Mahdi uprising is spreading rapidly across North Africa and the chances of finding the children seem remote. Forced to rely on themselves, Stas and Nel, together with two young African slaves, Mea and Kali, escape their captors and head south across desolate country. In their search for a way home, they must battle wild animals, thunderstorms, hunger and malaria. Their journey to freedom brings them into contact with some colorful adult mentors: Kaliopoli, a displaced Greek, guides Stas through a critical encounter with the great Mahdi and Linde, an eccentric Polish cartographer, himself lost in the jungle, offers hope when Nel comes down with malaria and all hope for her survival seems lost. Written by adam kossack

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Adventure | Family





Release Date:

23 March 2001 (Poland)  »

Also Known As:

Stas and Nel Adventures  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$4,200,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


During shooting the film in Johannesburg director Maciej Dutkiewicz had a sudden great pain in his kidneys and had to go to hospital. Although his condition improved, he was not allowed to continue his work on the set. The producers decided to go on with the shooting and replaced Dutkiewicz with the young South African director Gavin Hood. See more »


Edited into In Desert and Wilderness (2002) See more »


Nahima vara raha
(Kali nie boi stracha)
Written by Jacek Skubikowski
Performed by Anna Jurksztowicz, Shaluza Max Mntambo
See more »

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User Reviews

Rather a children's music video.
25 October 2001 | by (Warsaw, Poland) – See all my reviews

After reading the book and being quite riveted to it, I was quite looking forward to the new film version. I was unfortunately disappointed. I felt I was watching a very rushed version, and sadly many of the important issues had been changed, I believe, for commercial and "21st century" reasons. Gavin Hood, it would seem, tried to get through the filming as quick as possible. I do believe a Polish director should have stood at the helm of this project, although I understand that a director on site had to be found asap once the initial Polish director fell ill. What does stand out are the photography and the music, as well as the young actress playing Nell. Unfortunately, Fidusiewicz as Stas doesn't pull it off. All well and good for children, although it strays from the book and will probably confuse them with the "facts". Doesn't match up to the original film.

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Great movie for children and adults steffi_nor
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