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Snakes in Movies
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Snakes in Movies
Mogambo (1953)
Spoiler Alert !

Some of these pictures and descriptions may give away plot details that you might not want to know before watching the film.
Mogambo Mogambo Mogambo Mogambo

This is a Technicolor Adventure/Romance that was filmed largely on location in east Africa and directed by the great American director John Ford. Clark Gable is the male lead who plays the guy he always plays, but it also stars two of the most beautiful and talented actresses ever to appear on screen - Ava Gardner and Grace Kelly. (There's some spicy gossip about offscreen events during the making of this film, too.) Gardner has memorable scenes with a baby elephant and some wild cats, and there's also a lot of interesting library footage of African wildlife, including a nice sequence with a band of wild gorillas. And, of course, what's the point of making a jungle adventure movie without a snake?

Mogambo Mogambo Mogambo Mogambo
Mogambo Mogambo Mogambo Mogambo
In the first snake scene, Ava Gardner is invited to Clark Gable's safari camp in Africa by a Maharaja, but when she arrives with a dozen suitcases the rich Indian is gone and she's forced to stay with Gable and his men until the next boat comes in a week. Gable thinks she's a tramp and treats her meanly, but after she visits him at night when he's cleaning his great white hunter rifle, he changes his mind and offers her a drink. She looks across the room and sees a large python on the floor and screams, running into Gable's arms for protection. He tells Ava not to worry - the snake is "Old Joe" the resident "migratory moustrap." Then he flirts with her saying that he keeps the snake around to trap young girls. She tells him he doesn't need the snake for that. This movie was made back in the day when male movie stars played macho cave men who could roughly grab a woman without her consent and smash her face against his, and the audience thought it was normal. That's exactly what Gable does here, and of course, Gardner loves it.
Mogambo Mogambo Mogambo Mogambo
After a week of face-smasing, Gable forces a reluctant Gardner to leave when the river boat comes. She gets on the boat, but it has engine trouble a few miles downriver and she is rowed back to Gable's camp. She's wet and dirty and Gable is mean to her so when she gets into her room and finds Old Joe napping on her bed, she takes her frustrations out on the poor little python by screaming at him and throwing him off the bed. The python is a real one, and Gardner really interacts with it, so good on her for that.