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Kon-Tiki (1950)

Approved | | Documentary | 13 January 1950 (Sweden)
A documentary about the Kon-Tiki expedition of the Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl.


Thor Heyerdahl


Thor Heyerdahl
Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »




Complete credited cast:
Thor Heyerdahl ... Self - Narrator (Scandinavian, US versions)
Herman Watzinger ... Self
Erik Hesselberg ... Self
Knut Haugland ... Self
Torstein Raaby ... Self
Bengt Danielsson ... Self
Ben Grauer Ben Grauer ... Narrator (US introductory sequence) (voice)


"Kon-Tiki" was the name of a wooden raft used by six Scandinavian scientists, led by Thor Heyerdahl, to make a 101-day journey from South America to the Polynesian Islands. The purpose of the expedition was to prove Heyerdal's theory that the Polynesian Islands were populated from the east---specifically Peru---rather than from the west (Asia)as had been the theory for hundreds of years. Heyerdahl made a study of the winds and tides in the Pacific, and by simulating conditions as closely as possible to those he theorized the Peruvians encountered, set out on the voyage. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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SIX MEN ON A RAFT ACROSS THE PACIFIC! (original print ad - all caps) See more »




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Did You Know?


At the point of 2010, no one of the Kon-Tiki's members still alive: Torstein Raaby died in 1964 in Greenland by heart condition while he trying to get North Pole (he was 45). Erik Hesselberg died in 1972 in Larvik, Norway, by heart condition (he was 58). Herman Watzinger died in 1986 in Peru by natural causes (he was 70). Bengt Danielsson died in 1997 in Tahiti, by deterioration in his health (he was 75). Thor Heyerdahl died in 2002 in Colla Micheri, Italy, by a brain tumor (he was 87). Finally, Knut Haugland died in 2009 in Oslo, Norway, by natural causes (he was 92). See more »


Featured in Minns Ni? (1993) See more »

User Reviews

Forget Jaws or Cast Away!
26 April 2005 | by LeRoyMarkoSee all my reviews

Very well done film documenting the ultimate adventure. Heyerdahl and his team sail across the Pacific ocean on a wooden raft to prove the thesis that South American Indians took the same route and settled in the Polynesian Islands, long before Columbus discovered America. I'm curious to know where Heyerdahl's thesis stands today. The documentary is pretty good, considering the limited equipment that the crew had to work with. It's nevertheless riveting most of the time. I would be scared to death to be in the unknown like they were. At the same time, it's the ultimate adventure!

Seen at home, in Toronto, on April 26th, 2005.

87/100 (***½)

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Norway | Sweden



Release Date:

13 January 1950 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Тур Хейердал: Экспедиция на «Кон-Тики» See more »

Filming Locations:

Peru See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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