Hatari! Review

National Geographic gets a 2 1/2-hour plug with this John Wayne picture, a harmless yet extremely pregnant look at a safari team in East Africa.

Wayne plays Sean Mercer, the grizzled veteran behind a group tasked with collecting exotic animals ordered by various zoos. Along the way, he must contend with various minor crises - a female photographer wants to tag along, ostriches get loose, a baby elephant needs to be cared for.

"Hatari!" means "Danger!" in Swahili, but alas, the only hatari to be found in this rated G-class production is a minor rhino goring at the beginning of the film and a crocodile attack. Instead, most of the scenes play out like Abbott and Costello vignettes, with Wayne getting water or milk dumped on him every half hour or so.

The real hatari, I suppose is the hatari of love - with a minor battle breaking out over the affections of the two females on the ranch. A 159-minute romantic comedy, set in Africa and starring John Wayne? Quite an idea they had there...


Facts and Figures

Run time: 157 mins

In Theaters: Tuesday 19th June 1962

Distributed by: Howard Hawks

Production compaines: Malabar


Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 68%
Fresh: 15 Rotten: 7

IMDB: 7.3 / 10

Cast & Crew



Starring: as Sean Mercer, Hardy Krüger as Kurt Muller, as Anna Maria 'Dallas' D'Allesandro, as Pockets, Gérard Blain as Charles 'Chips' Maurey, as Little Wolf, Michèle Girardon as Brandy de la Court, as Luis Francisco Garcia Lopez, as Doctor Sanderson