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Tondelayo....


FredCDobbs
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Talking about Hedy Lamarr in "White Cargo"? I turned to TCM to see who you were referring to. I think the title of the movie is a great sense of humor.

 

EXACTLY how many bottles of Coppertone did they put on her? LOL.

 

If that happened to me, I wouldn't call it trouble, I call it halucinating.

 

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Just finished it. I liked it. Disappointed in Hedy, though not her fault. Of course, very beautiful, but a little offputting too. Those eyebrows and all that glossy makeup, that's not how a native looks. We find out that she is not really a native in due course but she lives as if one and her guile seemed to sophisticated for someone like that. I wish they had made her a bit more wild and gave her a way of speaking besides that phony broken English. I suppose it doesn't matter to Hollywood so long as they showcase a beauty. Of course, the light always fell on her a certain way. The movie was most interesting when she wasn't present:

 

Ashley: You know what I'm thinking?

Witzel: I didn't even know you thought.

 

Ashley: Have you noticed anything lately? The natives have been looking at me in a queer sort of way.

Witzel: Maybe they wonder how you can walk without a spine.

 

There is some fairly decent dialogue (this comes from a play, right?) I love Witzel's exasperation. I like the way the doctor kept going for the booze. He made me thirsty. Was Langford more obsessed with Tandelayo or with not giving Witzel any satisfaction? I think all the dialogue and interaction among the men were more interesting that Tandelayo. There was one scene where we get a nice side-view look at her rear end. That was her best scene. Not that her acting was so bad, it wasn't, and she is still striking, of course, but the 'damp rot' set in for me with her as the movie progressed.

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>Was Langford more obsessed with Tandelayo or with not giving Witzel any satisfaction? I think all the dialogue and interaction among the men were more interesting that Tandelayo.

 

I think this is what made the overall story so interesting, and Tandelayo was required.

 

Basically, the men hated the jungle, the heat, the humidity, the disease, the boredom, and the lack of contact with civilized society, plus the lack of girlfriends and wives. This made the men miserable and irritable. Then beautiful simple-minded Tandelayo comes into their lives, and that gives them only one dame among the several men, and that exacerbates their troubles.

 

They all dislike her but they desire her, in the most primitive fundamental way. They hate her because she is conniving, but they desire her because she?s the only good looking woman around. They put up with her primitiveness because she has exceptional physical characteristics. In some ways, the men revert to being primitive too, like cavemen 50,000 years ago, fighting over the only good looking cave lady in the village.

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Fred, I didn't mean to imply that Tandelayo wasn't needed for the story. Of course she was. All of what you wrote is correct and even self-evident. But with the big buildup of Tandelayo (e.g., here on the boards and probably anywhere this movie is discussed) it was interesting to me that she was not the be all and end all of what was enjoyable about the movie. This is my first viewing and I half expected a bad movie with a sexy star ... but I was wrong. It is a very good movie with a sexy star.

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I saw only the last fifteen minutes or so of the movie. Was that really poison that she was forced to drink, and did she really die, or did she just have a hysterical reaction to something that she thought was poison?

 

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>So Walter got away with murder

 

No, the film pointed out that he was the "Magistrate" of the district (or some similar head-honcho title). And at the end he told her he was the Magistrate and he found her "guilty" and the poison was her sentence.

 

Lol. It was the Congo in 1910.

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