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Kim (1950)

Approved | | Adventure, Drama, Family | 26 January 1951 (USA)
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2:49 | Trailer

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During the British Raj, the orphan of a British soldier poses as a Hindu and is torn between his loyalty to a Buddhist mystic and aiding the English secret service.

Director:

Victor Saville

Writers:

Rudyard Kipling (novel), Leon Gordon (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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These schoolgirls are more interested in racing forms than books as they try to get-rich-quick. They are abetted by the head-mistress' brother, played by Alastair Sim, who also plays the head-mistress.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Errol Flynn ... Mahbub Ali - The Red Beard
Dean Stockwell ... Kimball 'Kim' O'Hara Jr.
Paul Lukas ... Lama
Robert Douglas ... Colonel Creighton
Thomas Gomez ... Emissary
Cecil Kellaway ... Hurree Chunder
Arnold Moss ... Lurgan Sahib
Reginald Owen ... Father Victor
Laurette Luez ... Laluli
Richard Hale ... Hassan Bey
Roman Toporow Roman Toporow ... The Russian
Ivan Triesault ... The Russian
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Storyline

Kim, a young boy living on his own on the streets of India, is actually the son of a British officer. He meets a lama, a holy man, and devotes himself to his tending. But when British administrators discover his birthright, he is placed in a British school. His nature, however, is opposed to the regimentation expected for the son of a British soldier, and he rebels. His familiarity with Indian life and his ability to pass as an Indian child allows him to function as a spy for the British as they attempt to thwart revolution and invasion of India. Rejoining his holy man, Kim (with the help of daring adventurer Mahbub Ali) takes on a dangerous mission. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Famed Spectacular Adventure Story Filmed Against Authentic Backgrounds in Mystic India The Greatest Spy Thriller of Them All! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Russian

Release Date:

26 January 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Rudyard Kipling's Kim See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,049,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$2,896,000, 31 December 1951

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$5,348,000, 31 December 1951
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Loew's See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Richard Hale serves as omnipotent offscreen narrator in the first half of the film and serves in character as Flynn's disloyal employee Hassan Bey. However, even though they are ostensibly different people, the narration stops after Bay is killed. See more »

Goofs

When Kim is delivering a message in the evening, a Chuck-will's-widow can be heard calling. This species is found in the Western Hemisphere. See more »

Quotes

Mahbub Ali, the Red Beard: [With urgency] Down! Keep down! The night is full of eyes!
Kim: But for this meeting, your head would be full of holes.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The "I" in the title is dotted by a crescent. See more »

Connections

Version of Kim (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

D'Ye Ken John Peel?
(uncredited)
Traditional
See more »

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User Reviews

Flynn with a Red Beard in So-So Kipling Adaptation...
26 January 2004 | by cariartSee all my reviews

Many of Errol Flynn's bad career moves, particularly later in life, could be blamed on advice given by 'friends' who were far more comfortable on bar stools than making decisions, but in choosing to make KIM, Flynn had no one to point at but himself.

For the second of a two-film commitment to MGM (following THAT FORSYTE WOMAN), Flynn was given a choice between two films. One would entail a long 'shoot' in Africa, with his role the central character of the film; the other would involve shorter location work, in India, with his role a supporting character, although he'd be top-billed. He opted for India, thus passing on one of MGM's biggest hits, KING SOLOMON'S MINES, with Stewart Granger achieving superstardom in the role Flynn turned down. While KIM was a pleasant enough film, it wasn't nearly the 'hit' of the African adventure, and did little to stem the 41-year old actor's fading career.

The story of an English orphan, Kim (portrayed by 14-year old future "Quantum Leap" star Dean Stockwell), living on the streets of India and passing as native, while serving as a spy for the Empire, the production focuses on his 'education' by a holy Lama on a quest (portrayed by an oddly-cast Paul Lukas), and his covert activities, with his 'contact' being a woman-chasing, free-living Afghan horse trader/agent (Flynn, sporting a red beard and gray hair, but, as usual, simply portraying a caricature of himself). Evil is afoot in the Khyber Pass, stirred up by Czarist Russians, and Kim's knowledge and survival skills would be tested, even as his future is being decided.

While the production was certainly 'family friendly', Victor Saville's direction often dragged, and the cast could not overcome the stodgy pacing. The location scenes in India were, however, beautiful in Technicolor, although the film's lead, Stockwell, never left California (due to his age). Despite occasional flare-ups of malaria, Flynn enjoyed his visit to the Far East, financed by MGM, and, with little responsibility for the film's success, and usually inebriated, his performance was high spirited, to say the least!

With his MGM commitment complete, Flynn, after a brief stop in Italy to make a minor semi-documentary about soldiers (HELLO, GOD), would return to 'B' movies at Warner Brothers, as his career continued to free-fall.


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