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The Constant Gardener (2005)

7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 94,838 users   Metascore: 82/100
Reviews: 559 user | 223 critic | 39 from Metacritic.com

A widower is determined to get to the bottom of a potentially explosive secret involving his wife's murder, big business, and corporate corruption.

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(screenplay), (based on the novel by)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 29 wins & 51 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Hubert Koundé ...
Dr. Arnold Bluhm (as Hubert Kounde)
...
Sandy Woodrow
Daniele Harford ...
Miriam
Packson Ngugi ...
Officer in Morgue
Damaris Itenyo Agweyu ...
Jomo's Wife
Bernard Otieno Oduor ...
Jomo
...
Keith Pearson ...
Porter Coleridge
John Sibi-Okumu ...
Dr. Joshua Ngaba
...
Tim Donohue
...
Ghita Pearson
Nick Reding ...
Crick
...
Sir Kenneth Curtiss
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Storyline

In a remote area of Northern Kenya, activist Tessa Quayle is found brutally murdered. Tessa's companion, a doctor, appears to have fled the scene, and the evidence points to a crime of passion. Members of the British High Commission in Nairobi assume that Tessa's widower, their mild-mannered and unambitious colleague Justin Quayle, will leave the matter to them. They could not be more wrong. Haunted by remorse and jarred by rumors of his late wife's infidelities, Quayle surprises everyone by embarking on a personal odyssey that will take him across three continents. Using his privileged access to diplomatic secrets, he will risk his own life, stopping at nothing to uncover and expose the truth - a conspiracy more far-reaching and deadly than Quayle could ever have imagined. Written by focus features

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

kenya | doctor | death | diplomat | murder | See more »

Taglines:

Love. At any cost.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, some violent images and sexual content/nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

| | |

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

31 August 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El jardinero fiel  »

Box Office

Budget:

£15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$92,380 (South Africa) (6 January 2006)

Gross:

$359,387 (South Africa) (20 January 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(as dts)|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The novel was originally banned in Kenya because it depicts corrupt Kenyan officials. See more »

Goofs

When Sandy and Tessa are talking in Sandy's office, the cricket ball on his desk vanishes, then reappears in a different location. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Justin Quayle: Oh, thank you Arnold. I... I can manage that. But I still don't see why you couldn't wait a couple of weeks. Why go all the way up to Loki?
Tessa Quayle: Well, we want to hear Grace Makanga speak, and she won't be coming to Nairobi.
See more »

Crazy Credits

END CREDITS DEDICATION: This film is dedicated to Yvette Pierpaoli and all other aid workers who lived and died giving a damn. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #20.180 (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Kothbiro
(1993)
Written by Mbarak Achieng
Arranged and Performed by Ayub Ogada
Published by Womad Music Ltd. / EMI Virgin Music Ltd.
(p) 1993 Real World Records Ltd. / Virgin Records Ltd.
Ayub Ogada appears courtesy of Real World Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Not a great movie
11 November 2005 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

The constant gardener has it easy. It picks an emotionally charged subject matter and involves issues that are at the forefront of the political agenda. It has to be easier to make a film that has an impact on its audience from this starting point. It could have been genuinely awesome.

However i felt that the film was totally one dimensional. For those that haven't seen it (and this will in no way spoil the plot), the central theme is large biotech companies in Africa. It is undeniable that such companies do exploit the poorer nations but it is likewise undeniable that if such companies didn't exist we would not possess the range of drugs that we do today. There is no question that these companies do some good. With such a rich subject matter an exploration of shades of grey of the debate could be the basis for an excellent film. Sadly the film fell firmly on the anti-biotech side without any sort of fair trial. It is the lack of sophistication about the biotech = bad message that i objected to. Then as if the portrayal wasn't one sided enough anyone involved with either the British government or the biotech company was made a thoroughly unlikeable character in terms of personality.

I don't mean to suggest that as a stand alone piece of work the film was bad. The fact is that by choosing a subject matter that is so emotive the filmmaker must take on certain responsibilities. In the case of the constant gardener i thought the complex issues were not explored at all. We've all seen brilliant movies that balance both sides of a debate, exploring both the "hero's" and the "villain's" motivations, and justifying both to us. The constant gardener does not do this, and i believe is a worse movie for it.


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Similar movies? Muron
Too similar to the fugitive Kagsy_99
Overly simplistic politics + Implausible romance ruin it. MiloMindbender
Terrible movie AxleF
Do not be swayed by popular opinion pet_the_monkey
you all missed the point - watch the movie again marwashabbar
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