The African Queen
Humphrey Bogart ■ Katharine Hepburn
At the start of World War 1 German imperial troops burn down Reverend Samuel Sayer's mission in Africa. He is overtaken with disappointment and dies of fever. Shortly after his straight-laced sister, Rose Sayer (Hepburn) buries her brother she must leave on the only available transport a tired river steamboat 'The African Queen' manned by the ill-mannered bachelor Charlie Allnut (Bogart). Together they embark on a long difficult journey without any comfort. Rose grows determined to assist in the British war effort and presses Charlie until he finally agrees. Together they steam up the Ulanga encountering an enemy fort, raging rapids, bloodthirsty parasites, and endlessly branching stream which always seem to lead them to what appear to be impenetrable swamps. Despite opposing personalities the two grow closer to each other and ultimately carry out their plan to take out a German warship.
I grew up watching this movie, what more can I say? Anytime one of us got hungry and our stomach started growling the jokes about Mr. Allnut would come out.
I don't know exactly where my parents got the movie, maybe a yardsale, but I can't remember a time not watching The African Queen at least 2 or 3 times a year, often more.
It's one of the movies that introduced me to Classic Films, along with The Wizard Of Oz and It's A Wonderful Life. This movie instilled a love of old movies, Bogey, Hepburn, and quoting movies in me.
The movie is party comedy, part romance, and definitely serious in places. An all around good movie and fun to watch, this is a great one to start with if you aren't very familiar with Classic Films.
Note: There is a small amount of violence near the beginning that may be disturbing to small children, after that it's about as clean as you can get.
Humphrey Bogart ... Charlie Allnut
Katharine Hepburn ... Rose Sayer
Robert Morley ... The Brother / Rev. Samuel Sayer
Peter Bull ... Captain of Louisa
Theodore Bikel ... First Officer
Walter Gotell ... Second Officer
Democratic Republic Of Congo, Africa
Isleworth, Middlesex, England (studios)
Los Angeles, USA
1952 Academy Award
for Best Actor (Humphrey Bogart)
New York Film Critics Circle 1952 (2nd place)
Charlie: We can't do that!
Rose: How do you know? You never tried it.
Charlie: Well, yeah, but I never tried shooting myself in the head neither.
Rose Sayer: [after travelling through the rapids] Now that I've had a taste of it I don't wonder why you love boating.
Charlie Allnut: Well I ain't sorry for you no more, ya crazy, psalm-singing, skinny old maid!
Rose Sayer: Who do you think you are ordering me about?
Charlie Allnut: I'm the captain, that's what!