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Mountains of the Moon (1990)

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The story of Captain Richard Francis Burton and Lt. John Hanning Speke's expedition to find the source of the Nile river in the name of Queen Victoria's British Empire. The film tells the ... See full summary »

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(novel), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Richard Francis Burton
... John Hanning Speke
... Larry Oliphant
... Isabel Arundell (Mrs Burton as from 1861)
... Lord Murchison
James Villiers ... Lord Oliphant
... Edward
... Lord Houghton
... Mabruki
... Dr. David Livingstone
... William
... Lord Russell
... Herne
... Stroyan
... Ben Amir
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Storyline

The story of Captain Richard Francis Burton and Lt. John Hanning Speke's expedition to find the source of the Nile river in the name of Queen Victoria's British Empire. The film tells the story of their meeting, their friendship emerging amidst hardship, and then dissolving after their journey. Written by Greg Bole <bole@life.bio.sunysb.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

23 February 1990 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Aux sources du Nil  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Budget:

$19,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$4,011,793
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(Rankcolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Star Patrick Bergin portrayed Victorian poet, linguist, explorer, and anthropologist Sir Richard Burton who had the same real first name and same last stage name as the later famous stage and screen actor Richard Burton. See more »

Goofs

In an scene set in 1854, Isabel is looking at a copy of "The Perfumed Garden" translated by Burton. Burton did not publish this translation until 1886. See more »

Quotes

Arab chief in Cairo: In this wilderness you will find only Allah's terrible whimsy.
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Soundtracks

Wagogo Marriage Ritual
Recorded by David Fanshawe
From the album "Africa - Ceremonial & Folk Music"
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User Reviews

 
This is the 19th century story of two Bristish explorers efforts to discover the source of the Nile River which has baffled geographers since Ptolomey.
13 February 2007 | by See all my reviews

I love this film though it is not at all historically accurate. Still, it is a wonderful adventure story. In 19th century Britan, geographers knew very little about Africa least of all the source of the Nile River that flowed through Egypt. Sir Richard Burton and Albert Speke undertook two expeditions to find the source of the river, risking life and limb as they combat hostile tribesmen, disease, depression, and a fierce climate. Eventually their friendship comes to an end. The scene of the escaped slave being mercy-killed by Burton never occurred; that is Hollywood. Burton also did not translate the ASrabian Knights or the Karma Sutra till many years later after his career as an African explorer ended. The film also does not delve very much into why British society was so opposed to Burton. His marriage to Isabel was a Catholic marriage--she was from a prominent Catholic family and there had been anti Catholic riots at the time of this movie--in fact they did not meet in England. Her family had fled because of the riots. I only wish Burtons real story would someday make it into film.


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