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Mighty Joe Young (1949)

Approved | | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy | 29 August 1949 (Sweden)
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A young woman who has raised a giant gorilla from an infant brings him to Hollywood years later seeking her fortune in order to save her family's ranch.

Writers:

Ruth Rose (screenplay), Merian C. Cooper (from an original story by)
Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Terry Moore ... Jill Young
Ben Johnson ... Gregg
Robert Armstrong ... Max O'Hara
Mr. Joseph Young ... Himself
Frank McHugh ... Windy
Douglas Fowley ... Jones
Denis Green Denis Green ... Crawford
Paul Guilfoyle ... Smith
Nestor Paiva ... Brown
Regis Toomey ... John Young
Lora Lee Michel ... Jill Young, as a Girl
James Flavin ... Schultz
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mary Gordon ... Old Woman (unconfirmed)
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Storyline

In Africa, the girl Jill Young trades a baby gorilla with two natives and raises the animal. Twelve years later, the talkative and persuasive promoter Max O'Hara organizes a safari to Africa with the Oklahoma cowboy Gregg to bring attractions to his new night-club in Hollywood. They capture several lions and out of blue, they see a huge gorilla nearby their camping and they try to capture the animal. However, the teenager Jill Young stops the men that intended to kill her gorilla. Max seduces Jill with a fancy life in Hollywood and she signs a contract with him where the gorilla Joseph "Joe" Young would be the lead attraction. Soon she realizes that her dream is a nightmare to Joe and she asks Max to return to Africa. However he persuades her to stay a little longer in the show business. But when three alcoholic costumers give booze to Joe, the gorilla destroys the spot and is sentenced by the justice to be sacrificed. Will Jill, Gregg and Max succeed in saving Joe? Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Ten Terrific Thrills ! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Swahili

Release Date:

29 August 1949 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Mr. Joesph Young of Africa See more »

Filming Locations:

Thousand Oaks, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,800,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$1,950,000, 31 December 1949
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Argosy Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Color:

Black and White (Sepiatone) (some sequences)| Black and White

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Terry Moore claims that another actress was already hired for the role of Jill. She claims that she got the role by running to the end of the RKO lot and back after Ernest B. Schoedsack asked her, and claims that she was then hired on the spot. See more »

Goofs

As Joe lifts Jill to the top of the rocks after their first encounter with the cowboys, a ghost image of her legs, presumably a reflection off the painted backdrop, is visible. See more »

Quotes

Max O'Hara: [to the painter putting O'Hara's name on the door] No, no it isn't *big* enough.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Closing credits epilogue: Good bye from Joe Young See more »

Alternate Versions

Also available in a computer colorized version. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ray Harryhausen: Special Effects Titan (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Beautiful Dreamer
(uncredited)
Written by Stephen Foster
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Kong with a heart!
2 January 2006 | by hondo551See all my reviews

I remember seeing Mighty Joe Young before I ever saw King Kong, and for the longest time I preferred it to Kong because it seemed newer, with better effects, and more familiar actors, while Kong seemed older and a little creakier with a less familiar cast of characters. Over the years I've come to appreciate both as great movies, the same basic story or premise, but with a slightly different spin, one as a grand thrilling epic, and one as a heartwarming story with laughs and thrills. Where Kong is the tragic violent figure meeting his fate for the love of a woman, Joe Young is a warm cuddly teddy bear of a creature trying to stave off that wild beast that lives inside of him for the affection of a woman. Where Kong wouldn't expend a drop of sweat helping a human, except for Ann Darrow, Joe Young appears more than human in that he would sacrifice himself to save the children and adults in an orphanage engulfed in flames. And although Robert Armstrong doesn't play the same character in both movies, just the same type of character, it's kind of nice to see him learn from his mistakes in the previous film and early on in this one so that he can make a determined effort to have this story end differently. While King Kong may have been a grand slam out of the park, Mighty Joe Young still comes out as a solid home run.


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