|Richard J.Brzostek - 05/01/2007
Adventures in the picturesque landscapes of the African continent, February 11, 2006
"In Desert and Wilderness" (with the Polish title "W Pustyni i w Puszczy") is a great family film based on the novel by Henryk Sienkiewicz. Set in the 19th Century, the movie is filled with adventures in the picturesque landscapes of the African continent. Interestingly, there are some parallels between the events depicted here and modern conflicts between Arabs and Europeans.
A Polish teenager named Stas and a girl named Nel both have fathers that are engineers working on the Suez Canal. Because of an Islam holy war, the children are betrayed and kidnapped by their own servant. The children are to be traded in exchange for Islamic captives held by the British. Managing to escape with a young African man and woman, they trek across the continent. Their journey is filled with obstacles and perils, as they quest to return to their fathers.
Compared to Polish cinema in general, what distinguishes "In Desert and Wilderness" is its family friendly nature. Even by American standards, I would say it is rated "PG," something that is not always the case due to cultural differences in what is appropriate for younger viewers. The film does have some mild violence, but it is done in a way that any gruesomeness in kept to a minimum by taking place off-camera. The film may appeal most to children, but adults may find it entertaining as well.
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