View Full Version : Ghost and the Darkness
06-14-2005, 01:17 PM
They say it was based on a real story!!
What year did this happen?
06-14-2005, 01:36 PM
Is this the movie about the Lion that kills people? If so, then I believe it was around the turn of the century 1800's/1900's.
06-14-2005, 01:48 PM
Val Kilmer stars as Lt. Col. John Patterson, a 19th-century Irish engineer drafted by Britain's railroad bosses to build a trestle bridge over an African river, thus expanding the empire a tiny bit more. In Tsavo, Patterson is instantly hailed for killing a man-eating lion that had been making life hell for native workers. But morale sinks when a pair of unstoppable big cats devour more men and destroy the project. Along comes an Ahab-like, expatriate American hunter (Michael Douglas) to help Patterson face the almost preternatural powers of the two killers. The script by William Goldman (Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid) is based on fact, though the film owes more to Spielberg (specifically to Jaws) than history. There are also suggestive echoes of Kipling and Conrad in the material and characters, and there are hints of emotional complexity and psychological nuance that make one wish this could have been a great film instead of a merely fun one. --Tom Keogh
06-14-2005, 02:00 PM
Sorry, only saw it once.
06-14-2005, 02:56 PM
I believe it's titled The Ghost and the Darkness.
06-14-2005, 03:07 PM
I remember this film--I worked at a movie theater when it was released (first job.)
I found this info on www.imdb.com:
In 1896 Lt. Col. John Paterson was sent to East Africa to build a railway bridge. He had a deadline to meet but was confident he and his large workforce of Africans and Indians can get the job done in time. John's was a man of his word and got things done - which he demonstrated on his first day by killing a lion that had been pestering the workforce. This earned John respect, but it didn't last very long because a few weeks later 2 new lions began visiting and they're man-eaters. The film is based on a true story and during the construction of the bridge, the lions would enter the workers camp to kill. Believing them not to be real lions, the locals name them 'The Ghost' and 'The Darkness'. After losing dozens of workers to the lions, the railroad company brought in Remington, an American 'great white hunter', to kill them, but even his reputation for being the best could not prevent yet more carnage. It is believed that over 130 people were killed by the two lions in just a few months.
06-14-2005, 06:15 PM
I wouldn't want to mess with an angry dog let alone something like a lion that will litterally tear you appart.
Wonder if they're still at the field house in Chi-town?? Might be worth a drive...
Thanks Bob! You're right about the title!! I better change that...
06-14-2005, 06:27 PM
If anyone is interested in the real story of the man eating lions, do read The Man Eaters of Tsavo, by Lt. Col. J.H. Patterson (http://www.rtpnet.org/robroy/tsavo/tsavo.html).
Patterson was an engineer trying to build a railroad in British East Africa in 1898. His work was severely disruped by the visitations of two lions that killed and ate the workers. I do not believe they were called the "ghost and the darkness". They were ideed thought of as 'evil'. They supposedly killed and ate over 100 men. All work on the railroad stopped. Patterson, with construction halted had no choice but to attempt to hunt down the lions. And Patterson...well, read the book! ;)
These lions were special. Not only did they have a taste for human flesh but they were adult males and maneless (http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2002/04/0412_020412_TVtsavolions.html). Not until some time later would the maneless lions of Tsavo be studied and appreciated. Here is another Tsavo link. (http://www.lionlmb.org/gandd.html)
Those who want to see the lions in person have the opportunity. They are on display at the Field Museum of Chicago (http://www.fieldmuseum.org/exhibits/exhibit_sites/tsavo/maneaters.html)! I have it on my list of 'places to go'.
As for the movie, I enjoyed it. Michael Douglas "hammed" it up as usual(in a good way) and Kilmer was good too. Hollywood took it's usual liberties in style and storytelling but on the whole, it displayed the bravery of the men(of all races) that lived in those harsh environments.
Read the story then see the film. I think they are both worth it.
06-14-2005, 07:38 PM
I've been planning a trip to Chi-town for a while. I'm not sure when I'll get there. but that might have to happen!!
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