Elephant Boy

1937

Adventure / Drama / Family

166
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 100%
IMDb Rating 6.5 10 649

Synopsis


Downloaded times
January 12, 2021

Director

Cast

Sabu as Toomai
Wilfrid Hyde-White as Civil Guardsman
720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
756.28 MB
1280*720
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
80 min
P/S N/A / N/A
1.37 GB
1920×1080
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
80 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Ron Oliver 10 / 10 / 10

To See The Elephants Dance

A young ELEPHANT BOY dreams of becoming a hunter like his father, grandfather & great-grandfather. Rudyard Kipling's short story Toomai of the Elephants comes to life in this exciting little movie from Sir Alexander Korda's London Films. The original material has been embroidered upon, but the changes from Kipling, who had died in 1936, actually give the slight tale more punch without destroying its integrity. Location shooting, personally granted by the Maharaja of Mysore on his private lands, gives a veracity to the film which no studio back lot could equal. In the title role, young Sabu is utterly natural & authentic in his film debut. As equally at home in front of the lens as he is on the back of Kala Nag, the wise old elephant, Sabu is never anything less than completely convincing, whether he's scurrying up trees, bathing his pachyderm, or showing complete confidence in interacting around scores of the great beasts. Walter Hudd is persuasive as Petersen sahib, the hunter sent to round-up elephants for the Government. Allan Jeayes shows authority as Machua Appa, the elderly head tracker. Genial Wilfred Hyde-White, one of Britain's finest character actors, has a single scene as the local commissioner. The sequences dealing with the elephant herds, the lives of the mahouts, and the building of the stockade are all fascinating and give an almost documentary quality to the film at times. ************************* Born Sabu Dastagir in 1924, Sabu was employed in the Maharaja of Mysore's stables when he was discovered by Korda's company and set before the cameras. His first four films (ELEPHANT BOY-1937, THE DRUM-1938, THE THIEF OF BAGDAD-1940, JUNGLE BOOK-1942) were his best and he found himself working out of Hollywood when they were completed. After distinguished military service in World War II he resumed his film career, but he became endlessly confined for years playing ethnic roles in undistinguished minor films, BLACK NARCISSUS (1947) being the one great exception. His final movie, Walt Disney's A TIGER WALKS (1964) was an improvement, but it was too late. Sabu had died of a heart attack in late 1963, only 39 years of age.

Reviewed by zetes 6 / 10 / 10

Excellent adventure: Sabu's first film role

Wonderful little film adapted from Rudyard Kipling's story Toomai of the Elephants. Kipling's work always makes fine films, even if his British colonialism makes it somewhat dated. This particular film features an unpleasant master-servant relationship between the white man, Petersen (Walter Hudd), and the Indians. But, if you can get past that, and I think most mature people should be able to see the class system in its proper historical light, the movie is very enjoyable. Robert Flaherty discovered Sabu, later to star in such great films as The Thief of Bagdad, The Jungle Book, and Black Narcissus. Sabu is very good, though his English is sometimes difficult to understand. This was Flaherty's only narrative film - I expect that he directed the nature parts of the film and Zoltan Korda directed the actors. The best moments feel just like Flaherty's masterpieces, including a wonderful opening bit (discounting the unnecessary prologue) where Sabu, his elephant, and a monkey echo each other's movements as they all wake up in the morning. The cinematography is quite beautiful, as is the musical score. 8/10.

Reviewed by MartinHafer 6 / 10 / 10

Worth seeing but not among Sabu's best...just his first.

If you watch "Elephant Boy", I strongly recommend you use the closed captions along with the movie. This is because it's Sabu's first movie and his command of English isn't great and his accent quite thick. With the captions, this shouldn't be a major problem. The story is based on a Kipling tale and is set in India. Toomai (Sabu) is the son of a mahoot--an elephant driver. And, Toomai looks to follow in his family's footsteps and become a mahoot just like his many ancestors. When a white hunter arrives, Toomai's father and his elephant join in the expedition...and Toomai, though only about 12, is allowed to come along with them. This film is about the many things that occur during this hunt...things that force Toomai to grow up very quickly. While this is a decent film, it also is a product of its times. Paternalistic, presenting the British control of India is rather idealized terms as well as a few natives who are just Brits in dark makeup! My attitude is DON'T toss the film in the trash bin but just learn from it and understand its shortcomings. Sure, it's not exactly realistic but also represents Sabu's first film...a film which would end up changing his life radically. So is this a great film? No. At times, it seems rather plotless and meandering. There also were a few scenes which shocked me, as you could NEVER make scenes like it today...such as the elephant walking around the baby!! Worth seeing and better than a typical jungle picture of the day--with animals from all parts of the globe stuck haphazardly into the film because they films were made on the cheap. "Elephant Boy" is no cheapo jungle flick and only offers a few ill-placed bits of stock film (such as occasionally showing African instead of Asian elephants).

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