18 November 2009

A Boy Ten Feet Tall / Sammy Going South (1963)

I first watched this film in the mid-1980s at the South Kensington Squash Club off the Fulham Road. Following a squash match or two, my chums and I would repair to the upper level above the courts, eat packets of salt 'n vinegar crisps, watch television, and drink pints of bitter. Some of us played the casino machines, others made fun of the kids from the Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle still playing below. The attractive girl behind the bar, we convinced ourselves, was featured in the latest porno magazines.

A young boy living in Port Said, Egypt, narrowly escapes a bomb blast that destroys the apartment block where he lives. After discovering that both his parents were killed in the explosion, he decides to travel (on foot) to Durban, South Africa, to be with his only living relative, an aunt. During his 4500 mile journey across africa he has many adventures including a first hand experience with the slave trade and living for a time with a band of poachers and criminals. After several months of travel he finally arrives at his destination.

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