March 23, 2010
Paramount Home Entertainment
- Runtime: 105 minutes
- NTSC (Canada and USA)
The boozing, smoking, cussing captain of a tramp steamer, Charlie Allnut, saves prim and proper Rose Sayer after her brother is killed by German soldiers at the beginning of World War I in Africa. Many quarrels later, the two set sail on the Ulonga-Bora in order to sabotage a German ship. Based on the 1935 novel by C.S. Forester, the wonderful combination of Hepburn and Bogie (who won an Oscar) makes this a thoroughly enjoyable blend of comedy and adventure. Later came the book (and Clint Eastwood film) White Hunter, Black Heart, which chronicled Peter Viertel's experiences observing Huston throughout the making of the picture.
Much of the action was filmed on location in Africa, under grueling circumstances. Katharine Hepburn wrote a book about the adventure, entitled "The Making of the African Queen, or How I went to Africa with Bogart, Bacall and Huston and almost lost my mind".
Screenwriter Peter Viertel also wrote a book on the making of "African Queen." His effort, "White Hunter, Black Heart," was made into a 1990 film by Clint Eastwood.
FoxVideo laserdisc 8129-80 features the restored and remastered version of "The African Queen." It is the same version that was prepared for the film's 50th anniversary, but this laserdisc lacks the extras that came with the Commemorative Editions.