Elephant Walk

Synopsis: Colonial tea planter John Wiley, visiting England at the end of World War II, wins and weds lovely English rose Ruth 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; and by the hovering, ominous menace of the hostile elephants...
Genre: Drama
Director(s): William Dieterle
Production: Paramount Pictures
Rotten Tomatoes:
103 min

"and she was preparing to close her little

shop in Shillingworth-on-Thames. "

I know you're in a hurry to close. I can't

take this if it's got an unhappy ending.

I don't think authors should write unhappy

endings after all we've been through.

What with the air raids and buzz bombs

and things.

Now let me see. Just a quick look.

I knew it. She dies.

Take it, dear. Much as I'd love it,

I just couldn't. What about these two?

Do you think they're all right?

Have you read this one?

Hello. I'm sorry.

Am I too early? I mean, too late to...

I'd like to change a book.

If you try to be quick in deciding.

We're actually closed.

I won't be a minute. Lovely day.

That's John Wiley.

He's a tea planter from Ceylon.

He's been visiting his cousins,

the Mortimer Wileys. The Manor House.

Oh, really?

They say he's been here looking for a wife

to take back with him. He didn't find her.

So he's going back alone next week.

What civilized girl

would want to live in a jungle?

Imagine. Snakes and tigers and things.

I'll take these.

- Did you find something?

- Yes, actually.

Poisonous Reptiles of Ceylon.

- Good night, dear.

- Good night.

Are you really John Wiley from Ceylon?

Are you really Ruth Lacker

of Shillingworth-On-Thames?

Yes, I am!

By the way, Mr. John Wiley...

the Shillingworth lending library

does not carry books on snakes.

Don't they? I'm sorry, it was the only way

to get rid of that one hissing in your ear.

By the way, I've got something for you.

Look, our honeymoon tickets.

Two weeks in Paris, two days in Cairo,

Bombay if we want to...

and then home to Elephant Walk.

Darling, to really see

all those wonderful places.

Only two weeks ago,

I didn't know such a person as John Wiley.

Ruth, are you quite sure

this isn't all a little too fast for you?

No, I knew it.

I knew I could love you

the minute I first saw you.


But, Mother, you must admit

he is wonderful.

He seems a nice young man,

but we know so little about him.

At such short notice, what will people think?

I don't care what people think.

I just know I love him.

I shall pray for your happiness.

- Good night, darling.

- Good night.

It's just that you're going so far

from everything here.

I know, Mums.

- Welcome, master. Welcome, mistress.

- Hello, Tomas.

John, a Rolls!

Yes. It's about 15 years old, I'm afraid.

It belonged to my father.

Or the Governor, as they called him.

It's brand-new to me.

Sit back, darling. We have an all-day's drive.

- Well, do you like it?

- You should've told me it was so beautiful.

I didn't want to paint any pictures.

You wanted to be loved for yourself alone?

Are those tea fields?

No, darling. Tea doesn't grow underwater.

It grows on bushes, high up

in the mountains, as high as possible.

Those are rice paddies.

I always thought tea grew in yellow tins.

Welcome, master, welcome.

- Welcome.

- Hello, James.

Hello, Rong.

John, I can't believe this!

They wanted to impress you.

This is all in your honor.

A champagne lunch in the middle

of the jungle. What am I getting into?

Deeper into my heart.

A pretty speech.

Hello, we better start. We've got guests.

What's that building?

That's my factory, where we process the tea.

Are we on your plantation now?

Our plantation, darling.

We've been on it for about half an hour.

Half an hour? That's miles!

Yes, it is a few.

That's that lop-eared old bull again.

- I'll take a picture.

- No, stay where you are.

- Is he dangerous?

- Be quiet, Ruth.

Tomas, let's give him a noise

he understands.

I'm certainly glad he did understand.


It should have been done long ago.

The trouble is,

you have to get government permission.

- To do what?

- To kill one of their precious beasts.

- Then they are dangerous.

- That particular one, yes.

Dangerous and destructive.

There you are, darling.

Elephant Walk Bungalow.

- Welcome, master.

- Welcome, mistress.

Welcome, master.

- Welcome, master.

- Hello, Appuhamy.

Ruth, this is Appuhamy. He was

with the Governor long before I was born.

- He runs the place.

- Welcome, mistress.

Let's have the customary ceremony

about this.

I can't believe it!

I've never seen anything like this!

- If this is a bungalow...

- They call everything out here a bungalow.

I'm sorry if it's a little small.

Then I did marry a millionaire.

I'm afraid so.

What are you going to do about it?

I should have known when you bought me

all those beautiful clothes in Paris.

What a beautiful view!

That's the Elephant Walk,

where the place got its name.

Before the Governor built here...

the elephants used to come down that track

for centuries, to get to the water.

They don't still try to come through,

do they?

Elephants always remember.

In the Governor's time, a couple of them

were killed in the argument.

Perhaps it's revenge.

Don't worry, darling.

That wall keeps them out.

They try it from time to time,

just out of stubbornness.

Led by that big bull we saw?

- Why did you say that?

- I don't know.

It's just that he looks so fierce.

And he made you look fierce.

Why did your father choose

this particular spot to build on?

He liked it.

- It was a big risk, wasn't it?

- He liked risks.

- What's that, John?

- Come on, darling.

What is it?

That's his grave.

You mean your father's buried right here?

Why not? That's where he wanted it,

and he always got his way.

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Robert Standish

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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