Gunga Din (1939)

GEORGE STEVENS

Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBB.  USA, 1939.  .  Story by , , Screenplay by , , inspired by the poem by .  Cinematography by .  Produced by George Stevens.  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  Academy Awards 1939.  

Cary Grant, Victor McLagen and Douglas Fairbanks Jr in Gunga Din.

It’s fun in the sun as three British soldiers tear India apart looking for treasure. When they can’t find it, they receive some straightening out from their superior officer and are then sent into the desert to help put down an uprising of Thugees, a group of murderous rebels who worship the goddess Kali. One of the cheeky trio, played by , goes off with his loyal waterboy () on a continued quest to find riches and ends up being taken captive by the villainous group, leaving his companions ( and , who are both wonderful) to come and rescue him. Dedicated performances, spirited humour and terrific action scenes featuring hundreds of extras all combine for a breathtaking adventure film; the only sour note is the sight of what are obviously white actors painted black to play natives of India.

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