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Mogambo

97 customer reviews


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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Mogambo (DVD)

Screen legend Clark Gable ("Gone With The Wind," "It Happened One Night") is in the center of a steamy love triangle as an African big-game hunter pursued by Grace Kelly ("Rear Window") as a prim and proper British woman and Ava Gardner as a brash American showgirl. Filmed entirely in Africa, and directed by Oscar-winner John Ford ("Stagecoach," "The Grapes of Wrath"). Kelly and Gardner both received Oscar nominations.

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This remake of the 1932 Red Dust is famous for using the very same romantic leading man--21 years after the fact. But when that leading man is Clark Gable, what's a little gray hair in the temples? Gable was certainly still the great strutting rooster of American movies in 1953, when Mogambo made him a safari guide juggling two much younger women. First up is good-time girl Ava Gardner, who's game for a little harmless romp with Gable after she gets stood up by a playboy in the African jungle. But when Grace Kelly--the proper wife of a visiting anthropologist (Donald Sinden)--arrives on the scene, a new affair begins. The location shooting is much in the vein of King Solomon's Mines, although the story is much more intimate. This feels like a bit of a holiday for Hollywood's top director, John Ford, and not one of his most committed pictures. Still, Ford's unparalleled eye for backlit exteriors and for the way people move around in rooms is on display, even when the script wobbles. People always joke about Gable being too old for this movie, but that doesn't take into account his durable movie-star appeal--he certainly looks every inch the Hemingwayesque hunter, and it's not that big a stretch to imagine Gardner or Kelly in the clinches with him. Indeed, he and Grace Kelly had an offscreen affair during shooting, graying temples or not. --Robert Horton


Special Features

  • Theatrical trailer

Product Details

  • Actors: Clark Gable, Ava Gardner, Grace Kelly, Donald Sinden, Philip Stainton
  • Directors: John Ford
  • Writers: John Lee Mahin
  • Producers: Sam Zimbalist
  • Format: Color, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0), French (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: June 20, 2006
  • Run Time: 115 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000F7CMQ8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,004 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Mogambo" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Byron Kolln HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on January 8, 2006
Format: VHS Tape
MOGAMBO is a remake of the 1932 classic "Red Dust", based on Wilson Collison's Broadway play. John Lee Mahin re-tooled his original screenplay, and Clark Gable returned to reprise his role of a rubber plantation owner (Dennis Carson in "Red Dust", but called Victor Marswell in the remake).

Clark Gable's performamce is amazing. How often does an actor have the opportunity of revisiting a character 20 years later, and use their maturity and experience to flesh out the role to a greater extent than they did before? In "Red Dust", Gable was magnificent, but here in MOGAMBO, he is positively magnetic.

Ava Gardner plays Eloise Kelly (`Honey Bear') who battles with crisp Linda Nordley (Grace Kelly) for the affections of Victor. Gardner is more than a match for Jean Harlow; and Grace Kelly, in one of her first big important roles, is fantastic in the part originally taken by Mary Astor. Filmed on location in Africa, director John Ford brings a lot more action and cinematic thrill to the story, but the central love-trilogy remains the focus. Highly-recommend, but if you haven't seen "Red Dust", I recommend that as well.
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35 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Cory D. Slipman on February 8, 2003
Format: VHS Tape
Mogambo was essentially a convoluted love story set against the glorious and picturesque backdrop of the African savannah.
A somewhat aged looking Clark Gable in his typical macho style played Victor Marswell a safari leader and procurer of wild animals for zoos and circuses based in Kenya. Arriving at Gable's complex unexpectedly in search of a recently departed maharajah is the raven haired beauty Ava Gardner. Gardner, a wordly chorus girl from New York and Gable imediately hit it off. Things are proceeding swimmingly until the arrival of the next safari clients, the Nordleys. Professor Nordley played by Donald Sinden is an anthropologist interested in gorillas. His wife the prim, proper and lovely Grace Kelly rues her loveless marriage and is smitten with Gable. Gable returns her advances and soon we are in the midst of a love quadrangle.
The heat is turned up as the group goes on safari to gorilla country and passions percolate. All the while they are fleeing from hostile natives, chasing a plethora of wild and exotic animals and travelling through some of the most scenic country imaginable.
The interplay among the main characters as well as the supporting cast was very amusing. The settings and cinematography was first rate. The satisfying conclusion ties up the plot into a neat little package.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on July 9, 2006
Format: DVD
It's not often that a major star is given the opportunity to star in a re-make of a film. It's happened twice, that I know of: Clark Gable did it in Mogambo (a re-make of Red Dust) and Betty Grable re-made Coney Island as Wabash Avenue. However, I am here to ask if anyone has noticed that the DVD of Mogambo looks a bit soft and blurry in the wide shots. It's only in the close-up scenes that the picture looks sharp and clear. So many reviewers on this site focus on the stars, the director and the story, which is all well and good, but it would be very helpful if there were more emphasis on the picture and sound qualities of the DVDs as well. A great movie can suffer from poor sound and picture quality. It's a shame that some of the major studios do not bother to remaster some of their prints before releasing them. Come on guys, always strive to do better.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Classic Movie watcher on December 2, 2005
Format: DVD
Red Dust, the original on which Mogambo was based, starred Clark Gable and Jean Harlow set in Asia. 21 years later, the remake was in technicolor, shot in Africa and starred Ava Gardner and Grace Kelly.

What made this movie attractive were the 3-dimensional characters - Gable, as the animal trapper Victor, won hands down with his masculine outlook, down-to-earth character, knew-it-all worldly knowledge. Grace Kelly, as the married woman Linda, would steal every one's heart with her elegant beauty. But it was Ava Garner that shone brightly throughout the movie. She was Kelly, the American who fought fiercely, but clumsily and in vain, in her pursuit of Victor's love. She might lose to Linda but beneath her unforgiving remarks about Linda, she had a big and understanding heart. She helped Victor all along and stood up for Victor and Linda when Linda's husband began to suspect. Ava Garner was beautifully portrayed here, both under the camera and in the script. She had wit, courage and adapted well in the jungle. And there was chemistry between Gable and Gardner, whose vulnerable feelings were disguised by their professions and their strong characters.

A thought provoking movie about sophisticated people and mature love. And I couldn't see the ending coming, not until the last minute.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Ed Uyeshima HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on October 10, 2008
Format: DVD
Ava Gardner could hardly be considered anyone's second choice, but this is what director John Ford and screenwriter John Lee Mahin would have you believe in this overripe 1952 safari melodrama. Yet, she is the primary reason why this film is still worth a look 56 years later. Far more intuitively than Angelina Jolie these days, Gardner epitomized a primal sensuality and a hidden vulnerability, the combination of which was intoxicating in her prime. Ford captures this, as well as her dark beauty and sharp comedy sense, by casting her as smart-mouthed, carefree playgirl Eloise "Honey Bear" Kelly, who has come to a remote African outpost to meet up with a wealthy maharajah. Finding herself stood up, she is greeted by no-nonsense big game hunter Victor Marswell as she conveniently takes a shower al fresco. Before sparks can truly fly, a young British anthropologist and his prudish wife, Donald and Linda Nordley, arrive naively drawn to the flora and fauna.

Then a rather preposterous story turn occurs in which Marswell becomes smitten with Mrs. Nordley, and she with him since she swoons over the manly hunter over her milquetoast husband. Looking the patrician beauty that served her well during her brief movie career, a 24-year-old Grace Kelly plays Linda in typical melodramatic fashion. Her English accent is a bit overdone, and her character's motivations too simplistically presented for Kelly to shine, especially next to Gardner. As Marswell, the 52-year-old Clark Gable doesn't have quite the swagger he displayed so easily in his youth when he first played this role in 1932's Red Dust with Jean Harlow and Mary Astor in the Gardner and Kelly parts.
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