7.2/10
73,173
246 user 79 critic

Out of Africa (1985)

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5:10 | Clip
In 20th-century colonial Kenya, a Danish baroness/plantation owner has a passionate love affair with a free-spirited big-game hunter.

Director:

Sydney Pollack

Writers:

Karen Blixen (based upon the following: "Out of Africa" and other writings by), Judith Thurman (based upon the following: "Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Story Teller" by) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
2,748 ( 413)
Won 7 Oscars. Another 23 wins & 27 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Meryl Streep ... Karen
Robert Redford ... Denys
Klaus Maria Brandauer ... Bror
Michael Kitchen ... Berkeley
Malick Bowens ... Farah
Joseph Thiaka Joseph Thiaka ... Kamante
Stephen Kinyanjui Stephen Kinyanjui ... Kinanjui
Michael Gough ... Delamere
Suzanna Hamilton ... Felicity
Rachel Kempson ... Lady Belfield
Graham Crowden ... Lord Belfield
Leslie Phillips ... Sir Joseph
Shane Rimmer ... Belknap
Mike Bugara Mike Bugara ... Juma
Job Seda Job Seda ... Kanuthia
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Storyline

Follows the life of Karen Blixen, who establishes a plantation in Africa. Her life is Complicated by a husband of convenience (Bror Blixen), a true love (Denys), troubles on the plantation, schooling of the natives, war, and catching VD from her husband. Written by Tony Bridges <tbridges@spicer.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Based on a true story.


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Features Klaus Maria Brandauer's only Oscar nominated performance. See more »

Goofs

The double-lever, rack-and-pinion "Wing" corkscrew has its origins in H.S. Heely's 1888 British patent on a corkscrew he called the A1 Heeley Double Lever. A version of the corkscrew reached the United States in 1930, but it was widespread in Europe before that. See more »

Quotes

Karen Blixen: Is there a prince in there?
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Alternate Versions

Network TV version features additional footage not included in theatrical release. See more »

Connections

Featured in Meryl Streep - Mystères et métamorphoses (2020) See more »

Soundtracks

Concerto for clarinet and orchestra in A (K.622)
(1791)
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performed by Jack Brymer Clarinet, The Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields
Directed by Neville Marriner
Used Courtesy of Philips Classic Productions, The Netherlands
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User Reviews

 
Roger Ebert wrote "You Have to Be Very Talented to Be Working with Meryl Streep". Sydney-Meryl Combo Rules!
29 January 2012 | by sashank_kini-1See all my reviews

Watching Meryl Streep in 2011's The Iron Lady and in 1985s Out of Africa gave me two different results. While in both of them, Meryl gave her best shot, the director's approach towards the actress is very different. In Out of Africa, Meryl's character Karen is a hardworking, independent, strong-willed young baroness/plantation worker later author, while in The Iron Lady, she oscillates between an eighty year old dementia-suffering Thatcher and a middle-aged Thatcher, both authoritative.

While I do understand Phyllida's attempt to have Meryl foreshadow others to show Thatcher's dominance, the movie itself became a one-woman show that barely gave a s*** about the supporting cast. While in Out of Africa, Pollock never resorts to showy camera work to highlight Meryl. The camera moves through the picturesque Africa and the beautiful Meryl so naturally as if the cameraman was lost in the beauty of the entire place. While Meryl is a marvel, Pollock himself is a wise man who gave the picture an independent existence. The Iron Lady will always remain Meryl's Iron Lady.

Based on a true story, Out of Africa shows Karen Blixen's life as she adjusts to the African lifestyle while romancing Denys (Redford) and divorcing Bror (Klaus). The opening itself talks of the farm at the foot of the Ngong Hills and is voiced by Streep in a very distinctive accent. Many of her performances, especially the ones where she uses accents, are slightly difficult to accept first but shine later, even though she does sound like Sly Stallone at times, especially when she says in one scene "I want you to COME HOME". Karen marries Bror to retain her title of baroness and moves to Africa. Bror uses her money against her wishes and doesn't take care of her properly. Karen meets Denys and another guy, and invites them to her home. Both the guys are attracted to her but things go awry for one. Denys and Karen fall in love but Denys lives a very different life, independent like Karen but in a nomadic way. Karen runs the entire farm, opens up a school and acquaints and adjusts herself with the Africans.

Pollack has handled the movie tactfully, and the film is enriched by fine performances. The green verdant lands of Africa with the pastoral huts of the Africans on one hand and the lavishness of the Britishers on the other can be seen. There is this lovely scene where the tribe chief tells Karen that only tall children will go to school. When Karen tells him that sending kids would be very wise of him, the African replies that the Britishers have learned to read, but it has not helped them in any way. Still, the farmers hold respect for Karen's caring nature.

Clocking at 2 hours and 40 minutes, Out of Africa is like a landscape of a beautiful bird on its mighty flight over the flowing rivers and the dense forests. My Rating: 8 out of 10


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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

USA | UK

Language:

English | Swahili

Release Date:

20 December 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Out of Africa See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$31,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,637,290, 22 December 1985

Gross USA:

$87,071,205

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$227,514,205
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Mirage Enterprises See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby (35 mm prints) (as Dolby Stereo)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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