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Mister Johnson (1990)

PG-13 | | Drama | April 1991 (USA)
Trailer
3:10 | Trailer
In 1923, a local resident of British Colonial Nigeria tries to be equal with the colonial administration.

Director:

Bruce Beresford

Writers:

William Boyd, Joyce Cary (novel)
Reviews
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Maynard Eziashi ... Mister Johnson
Pierce Brosnan ... Harry Rudbeck
Edward Woodward ... Sargy Gollup
Beatie Edney ... Celia Rudbeck
Denis Quilley ... Bulteen
Nick Reding Nick Reding ... Tring
Bella Enahoro Bella Enahoro ... Bamu
Femi Fatoba Femi Fatoba ... Waziri
Q Q ... Benjamin
Hubert Ogunde Hubert Ogunde ... Brimah (as Chief Hubert Ogunde)
Sola Adeyemi Sola Adeyemi ... Ajali
Jerry Linus Jerry Linus ... Saleh
George Menta George Menta ... Emil
Steve James ... Aliu
Tunde Kelani Tunde Kelani ... Jamesu
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Storyline

In 1923 British Colonial Nigeria, Mister Johnson is an oddity, an educated black man who doesn't really fit in with the natives, nor the British. He works for the local British magistrate, and considers himself English, though he has never been to England. He is always scheming, trying to get ahead, which lands him in a lot of hot water. Written by John Oswalt <jao@jao.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Africa 1923: A clash of cultures between British imperalists and a black man too smart for his own good.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

April 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Gospodin Johnson See more »

Filming Locations:

Kano, Kano State, Nigeria See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,051, 24 March 1991

Gross USA:

$1,464,242

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,464,242
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Avenue Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to film critic Roger Ebert, "when the novelist Joyce Cary went out to Nigeria to join the British colonial civil service in 1913, there was no question in his mind, and in the minds of most British, that he was doing a good thing, representing the world's greatest democracy in an African backwater much in need of improvement. When Cary wrote 'Mister Johnson', the fourth of his African novels, in 1939, some questions had begun to arise. The novel is about those questions." See more »

Quotes

Celia Rudbeck: Perhaps you could clean your teeth tonight having taken the pipe out of your mouth - that would be a change.
Harry Rudbeck: I'm sorry, Celia.
Celia Rudbeck: Sorry about what?
Harry Rudbeck: I'm sorry about all of this.
Celia Rudbeck: Are you? You don't do anything about it.
Harry Rudbeck: Do? Well, what can I do? I'm in bloody West Africa. In the bloody bush. This isn't Mayfair, you know!
Celia Rudbeck: You don't have to tell me that. What about that horrible peanut soup? Peanut soup! Any idiot can make vegetable soup - even in bloody West Africa.
Harry Rudbeck: Why don't you tell Jamesu what you ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Dedicated to Chief Hubert A. Ogunde (1915 - 1990) See more »


Soundtracks

Ah! Fuyez Douce Image
from Manon
Written by Jules Massenet
Sung by Enrico Caruso
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Mister Johnson
2 January 2006 | by clotblasterSee all my reviews

Poignant exploration and depiction of a person with dreams and aspirations. Not your typical film. Based on novel by Joyce Cary (very good novel) and pretty much sticking to the book's plot etc., this story should touch your feelings fairly deeply and perhaps make you think about the illusions (delusions) and impossibilities that drench many people's lives. Beresford (Driving Miss daisy, Breaker Morant) directs tautly and beautifully. Watching this film should make you a wiser, deeper person--don't miss it. (will probably have to buy copy from Amazon or ebay or perhaps from netflix.) Set in Africa, colonial theme is important. Moreover, racial dimension (protagonist is black) makes the story edge towards the politically incorrect. The hero's skin color is significant, but he is not a victim of racism--at least not in liberal's knee-jerk way.


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