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MouthShut Score

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4.57 

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Man-Eaters on the prowl...A TRUE story
Dec 08, 2005 01:27 AM 6933 Views
(Updated Dec 08, 2005 01:30 AM)

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Movie Facts:


In 1898, two maneless male lions killed and devoured 135 Indian and African workers constructing a railroad bridge over the Tsavo River in Kenya. It took Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson, the engineer in charge of the project, nine months to hunt and kill the beasts, an ordeal recounted in his 1907 book, The Man-Eaters of Tsavo, and later the subject of two films, 1952's Bwana Devil and 1996's The Ghost and the Darkness.


Plot:


The Ghost and The Darkness begins with Colonel Patterson (Val Kilmer) being assigned the task of building a bridge on Tsavo river, South Africa. Leaving his pregnant wife alone Patterson reaches there with an assistance called Vahim. There are around 3000 workers of Indian and African ethnicity there currently building the bridge. However a man-eater causes problems one day. Patterson shoots him down and the work starts flowing smoothly.


But after a few months the disaster strikes again when two man-eaters start killing people.


This two man-eaters work together unlike lions who usually hunt alone for their prey. They strategize and hunt for their prey. After killing their prey they collect their bones unlike any other lions. This further terrorizes the people. The natives start believing that these are the spirits of the men, who died while building the bridge due to lack of medicines ,trying to rid Africa of the white man.They name them ''The Ghost'' and ''The Darkness''.


All this causes a delay in the work. To finish of the task faster the foreman of the camp contacts his friend Charles Remington (Michael Douglas) who is a well known hunter.But the task becomes even harder because the lions attack in broad daylight also and show fear of nothing. The workers start moving out and only the foreman, Charles and Patterson are left to deal with the man-eaters. What follows next is a fantastic adventure of hunting a man-eater where the hunters are also the hunted.


Performances:


Michael Douglas as usual is really influential and convincing. Vam Kilmer too is good while fighting with obstacles. The photography is really great showing the beautiful South-Africa. However the real heroes of the movie are the two lions ''The Ghost'' and ''The Darkness''. It must have taken really great pains to train the lions and make them deliver in front of the screen.


A really adventurous ride, worth enjoying. Even more than a century later, the story of Ghost and Darkness still fascinates and terrifies.


Some true facts:


In reality Patterson took 9 months to get rid of the man-eaters. He finally killed the first lion on December 9 1898, and the second three weeks later. The lions had killed nearly 140 workers. Also the character of Charles played by Douglas was created fictionally just to add more script to the narrative and make it better. In real ambush there was no such character.


After 26 years as Patterson's floor rugs, the lions' skins were given to the Chicago Field Museum for a sum of $5,000 US.


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