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Colonial tea planter John Wiley (Peter Finch), visiting England at the end of World War II, wins and weds lovely English rose Ruth (Dame Elizabeth Taylor) and takes her home to Elephant Walk, Ceylon, where the local elephants have a grudge against the plantation. Ruth's delight with the tropical wealth and luxury of her new home is tempered by isolation as the only white woman in the district; by her husband's occasional imperious arrogance; by a mutual physical attraction with plantation manager Dick Carver (Dana Andrews), and by the hovering, ominous menace of the hostile elephants.Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
During the first bicycle polo scene, there are four drink glasses on the server's tray when John Wiley takes one, followed by another rider who also grabs a glass, leaving just two on the tray. However the very next pass in which a rider goes for a glass the tray is full. See more »
Elizabeth Taylor, fresh from Chillingford-on-the-Thames, has just married Ceylonese tea planter Peter Finch and he's taken her back home. He's got quite a place over in what is now Sri Lanka, a 'bungalow' big enough to have a polo field. And that's exactly what they do there. He and his father's friends get on bicycles and play polo in the living room.
It's all tradition you know started by Finch's dad who is known to one and all as 'the Guv'nor.' He must have been something else, in everyone's memory he becomes almost a caricature of the colonial Briton.
The man must truly have been nuts or else he was one of those colonials who Noel Coward warned went out in the noon day sun a little too long. He built this palatial estate right on a well worn path that the elephants use to get to fresh water when the streams dry up in their neck of the woods. The local natives have to periodically ward them off with noise. They can't kill them because of the strict conservation laws and the Buddhist tradition.
Maybe I missed something here, but did he have to build the house right there? Does make for a spectacular climax though.
Peter Finch feels the need to keep traditions up and all the friends come over every week, get stinking drunk, and play bicycle polo in the living room. Not exactly the home Liz had in mind. She seeks some solace with overseer Dana Andrews who being American is not into all the colonial British traditions.
Elephant Walk, which is also the name of the Finch estate, has the advantage of some really beautiful cinematography in Sri Lanka. Lends an air of realism to a rather unreal plot.
Check out Abraham Sofaer who plays the major domo of Elephant Walk with the biggest handlebar mustache on record. One that Terry-Thomas would have envied.
Vivien Leigh was supposed to do Elephant Walk, but she bowed out do to health issues. That tuberculosis did flare up at the right time though.
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