Sunday, July 11, 2010

Out of Africa

Based on the life of Karen Blixen (whose nom de plume was Isak Dinesen), Out of Africa features surprisingly little in the way of indigenous food. Or maybe it’s not surprising: after all, the Blixens and their English counterparts intended to “civilize” the colony of Kenya. Most of the dishes in the film seem to have been brought directly from the colonizers’ home countries, even if actually cultivated or produced in Africa: potatoes, green beans, peas, cheese, bread. The wine and champagne are unquestionably from Europe. The fish that Blixen (Streep) serves Finch Hatton (Redford) and Cole (Kitchen) certainly comes from the river that she has had dammed up to make a pond on her farm, but the only other local flavor depicted is the meat that Finch Hatton shoots for dinner while he and Blixen are “on safari”--although never stated, it’s probably water buffalo.

Released 1985
Directed by Sydney Pollack
Screenplay by Kurt Luedtke, based on books by Karen Blixen (Out of Africa, Shadows on the Grass, and Letters from Africa as Isak Dinesen), Judith Thurman (Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Storyteller), and Errol Trzebinski (Silence Will Speak)

Starring Meryl Streep as Karen Blixen, Robert Redford as Denys Finch Hatton, Klaus Maria Brandauer as Bror Blixen, Michael Kitchen as Berkeley Cole, Malick Bowens as Farah, Joseph Thiaka as Kamante, Stephen Kinyanjui as Kinanjui, Michael Gough as Lord Delamere, Suzanna Hamilton as Felicity, Rachel Kempson as Lady Belfield, Graham Crowden as Lord Belfield, Leslie Phillips as Sir Joseph, Shane Rimmer as Belknap, Mike Bugara as Juma, Job Seda as Kanuthia, and Mohammed Umar as Ismail

Awards: 1986 Academy Awards for Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, Best Cinematography, Best Director, Best Music-Original Score (John Barry), Best Picture, Best Sound, and Best Writing-Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium; 1987 BAFTA Film Awards for Best Cinematography, Best Screenplay-Adapted, and Best Sound; 1987 BMI Film & TV Music Award; 1986 British Society of Cinematographers Best Cinematography Award; 1986 David di Donatello Awards for Best Foreign Actress (Streep) and Best Foreign Film; 1986 Golden Globe Awards for Best Motion Picture-Drama, Best Original Score-Motion Picture, and Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture (Brandauer); 1987 Guild of German Art House Cinemas Gold Award for Foreign Film; 1986 KCFCC Awards for Best Actress (Streep) and Best Supporting Actor (Brandauer); 1987 LCC Film Special Achievement Award for John Barry; 1985 LAFCA Awards for Best Actress (Streep) and Best Cinematography; 1985 NBR Award for Best Supporting Actor (Brandauer); 1985 NYFCC Awards for Best Cinematographer and Best Supporting Actor (Brandauer)

1 comment:

Rosarinho said...