Something of Value

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Something of Value
Something of Value 1957.jpg
Theatrical poster
Directed by Richard Brooks
Produced by Pandro S. Berman
Written by Robert C. Ruark (novel)
Richard Brooks
Starring Rock Hudson
Dana Wynter
Sidney Poitier
Wendy Hiller
Music by Miklós Rózsa
Edited by Ferris Webster
Distributed by MGM
Release dates
  • May 10, 1957 (1957-05-10) (U.S.)
Running time
113 Min
Country United States
Language English
Budget $2,553,000[1]
Box office $3,600,000[1]

Something of Value is a 1957 drama directed by Richard Brooks and starring Rock Hudson, Dana Wynter and Sidney Poitier. The film was reissued under the title Africa Ablaze.

The movie, based on the book of the same name by Robert Ruark, portrays the Mau Mau uprising in Kenya. It shows the colonial and native African conflict caused by colonialism and differing views on how life should be lived. It stars Rock Hudson as the colonial and Sidney Poitier as the native Kenyan. The two men grew up together but have drifted apart at maturity.


Kikuyu tribal members work on Henry McKenzie's farm in 1940s Kenya. Two young men, Kenyan native Kimani and Henry's son Peter, have grown up together, almost like brothers.

Prejudices surface when Peter's brother-in-law Jeff Newton slaps the face of Kimani after his request to use a rifle. Kimani leaves the farm, but is carried back by Peter after having caught his foot in a trap.

Mau Mau tribesmen plot an insurrection as Kenya's tensions rise. Kimani sides with them and is asked to steal a supply of rifles as a test. He parts ways for many years with Peter, who becomes a safari leader to help raise money for the farm. His fiancee Holly Keith arrives and they intend to marry.

Kimani impregnates the daughter of a Mau Mau tribal elder. A raid on the farm results in the murders of Newton and his children. British forces retaliate by bombing a Mau Mau encampment, taking tribesmen prisoner and torturing them.

Peter wants to continue his life in Africa, but troubles worsen when Holly must fight off Mau Mau warriors. Henry hastily gets her and Newton's wife to safety in Nairobi. Peter goes looking for Kimani, who has been identified as the leader of the Mau Mau raiding party that killed his brother-in-law and Newton's children. They fight to the death, Kimani ultimately falling into a pit of bamboo spikes.



According to MGM records, the movie earned $2.1 million in the U. S. and $1.5 million overseas, for a net loss of $410,000.[1]


  1. ^ a b c The Eddie Mannix Ledger, Los Angeles: Margaret Herrick Library, Center for Motion Picture Study .

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