Sunday, February 17, 2013

King Soloman's Mines(1950) won Academy Awards for Best Cinematography, Colour and Best Film Editing and was nominated for Best Picture.

King Solomon's Mines (1950). Won Academy Awards for Best Cinematography, Color and Best Film Editing and was nominated for Best Picture. On March 29,1950 at the RKO Pantages Theatre, Hollywood, California, Hosted by, Fred Astaire.

King Solomon's Mines (1950). A Adventure, loosely based on the 1885 novel King Solomon's Mines by Henry Rider Haggard. Cast: Deborah Kerr, Stewart Granger and Richard Carlson. Directed by Compton Bennett and Andrew Marton and released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

The film starts out with Quatermain, guiding a group of men on a safari when they come across a herd of elephants and one is shot and killed. We watch as the other elephants try to protect the dead elephant.

When he gets back to the compound, he finds that Elizabeth Curtis and her brother have made the long journey from England to Africa in search of her missing husband who has come to the Africa in search of King Solomon's diamond mines.

Still upset about the last safari, he is not ready to go back to work, but.. he needs the money and they have a map to lead the way.

A tall, mysterious native, Umbopa, joins the safari.

At first Quartermain and Elizabeth, find it hard to like each other... but, after living through a wildfire and a animal stampede, they begin falling in love.

They happen to cross paths with the fugitive Van Brun, a lone white man living with a tribe. After, Allan recognizes him, they fear for their lives and take him hostage to leave the village safely. Van Brun, wanting to escape from them tries to shoot Allan, killing Khiva. Which causes the villagers to go on the war path.

When they reach the mines, they are met by people who look like thier new freind, Umbopa. They discover that he is royalty and has returned to dethrone the evil King Twala. Umbopa leaves with his friends, while Allan, Elizabeth and John, stand before, Twala with out the protection of Umbopa.

With his last bullet, John kills a attacker, stopping the other natives. The king's right hand man Gagool, tells them that they have seen Curtis and leads them to a cave that contains the diamonds and the skeletal remains of Curtis. Gagool, takes the opportunity to trap them inside the cave. Will they find a way to escape with their lives or will they fall to the same fate as Curtis?

The film entirely shot in Africa and you can see why King Solomon's Mines won Academy Awards for Best Cinematography, Color and Best Film Editing. King Solomon's Mines one of the most amazing adventures ever filmed. You will never forget the scenes involving wild animals. Especially, the stampede scene. The different natives shown in their own land make this film specially interesting. The Watusi tribe, is the most beautiful tribe I have ever seen.

Fun Facts:

Filming took place at the following locations in Africa: Murchison Falls in Uganda; Astrida, "the land of giant Watusis"; Volcano Country and Stanleyville in the Belgian Congo; Tanganyika; and Rumuruti and Machakos in Kenya.

The film marked the beginning of Eva Monley's career as a Hollywood location scout and producer, specializing in Africa.

The film won Academy Awards for Best Cinematography, Colour and Best Film Editing and was nominated for Best Picture.

The only thing at all musical in the film is some African chanting and drums.

Errol Flynn was originally cast as Quartermain, but turned it down, as he did not desire to sleep in a tent on location in Africa. Instead he did Kim, which was filmed in India, but the accommodations for the actors were at a local resort.

The same introductory African drums and chanting were used again two years later in Mogambo.

1 comment:

  1. This really is a beautiful film. The Watusi dancing with dancers sporting lion manes and bell bracelets on the ankles was fantastic as well as
    those beautiful Watusi dressed in their bright and colorful drapery with their highly stylized hair, striding languidly across the hill side to greet the cast. STUNNING, really! It inspired me to sketch those costumes many times. I often wondered if they were authentic Watusi fashion. A very special film.


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