The Macomber Affair (The Great White Hunter)


The Macomber Affair (The Great White Hunter) (1947)




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Movie Info

When a man dies under suspicious circumstances, the law must decide if it was murder or an accident. Francis Macomber (Robert Preston) is a wealthy, carefree gentleman who hires Robert Wilson (Gregory Peck), an expert hunter, as his guide when he sets off on a safari in Kenya. Francis' wife Margaret (Joan Bennett) regards her husband as a fool and a coward, and before long, she develops a strong attraction to Robert -- which she does not bother to keep secret. However, Robert informs her that as a matter of personal ethics, he would not consider becoming involved with her. After several weeks on the African savannah, Francis feels himself changing; he's developed a new bravery and sense of confidence, and as a test of himself, he one day stands in the path of a charging buffalo as he prepares to shoot. However, shots ring out from behind him, and Francis falls dead. Margaret insists that she was trying to kill the animal before it could trample Francis and missed, but given her well-documented contempt for her husband, the widow finds herself on trial for murder. The Macomber Affair was based on the short story "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber" by Ernest Hemingway, though director Zoltan Korda found it necessary to rework the material (with the input of the featured cast) in order to appease the industry censors of the day.


Gregory Peck
as Robert Wilson
Joan Bennett
as Margaret Macomber
Robert Preston
as Francis Macomber
Reginald Denny
as Capt. Smollet
Carl Harbord
as Coroner
Earl Smith
as Kongoni
Hassan Said
as Abdullah
Martin Wilkins
as Bartender
Vernon P. Downing
as Reporter Logan
Darby Jones
as Masai Warrior
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Critic Reviews for The Macomber Affair (The Great White Hunter)

All Critics (2) | Top Critics (1)

There is hardly a point that Hemingway made in this savage, complex communique about the war between the sexes that Korda and his actors fail to make in movie terms.

Feb 27, 2018 | Full Review…

The melodrama has terrific measured performances by the three stars.

Aug 18, 2013 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Macomber Affair (The Great White Hunter)


Taking into account the shortcomings of the period: rear projection and non location filming this is a solid adventure film. Really a three person chamber piece the success or failure of the film rests on the performances of its leads and there it's on solid ground. Both Peck and Preston do good work but the standout is Joan Bennett. As a woman turned into a hard article by a bad marriage though subtle gestures and sly looks she gives the film a tough grounded center and she has rarely looked so beautiful. Not having read the book I'm not sure how closely it follows but the film does have a Hemingway feel.

jay nixon
jay nixon

Super Reviewer

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