On A Movie Called “The Snows of Kilimanjiro”

A Henry King film, The Snows of Kilimanjiro (1952) serves up biographical content about Ernest Hemingway, here in the guise of a writer named Harry Street, and it’s pretty strong on the subject of loss. To be specific, there is the loss of an unborn baby and later of the woman (Ava Gardner) who carries the baby. Gardner’s Cynthia Green is Harry’s true love (their scenes together are usually pleasurable).

By and by, however, the film becomes perturbingly bad—tedious, in fact. To me, as played by Gregory Peck, Harry is not very interesting (just like Ava Gardner’s acting) or appealing. Kilimanjiro is serious, to be sure, but so is the Henry King-Gregory Peck production The Gunfighter, and it’s a gem.

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