Out of Africa

1985 PG 2h 41m DVD

Out of Africa

1985 PG 2h 41m DVD
  • Overview
  • Details
Hoping to forge a better life, Denmark native Karen Blixen (Meryl Streep) enters into a marriage of convenience with a womanizing baron. But when the couple moves to Nairobi, Karen falls in love with a free-spirited hunter (Robert Redford) who can't be tied down. Director Sydney Pollack's lush period drama earned seven Academy Awards, including statues for Best Picture, Best Screenplay and Best Cinematography.
Meryl Streep, Robert Redford, Klaus Maria Brandauer, Michael Kitchen, Malick Bowens, Joseph Thiaka, Stephen Kinyanjui, Michael Gough, Suzanna Hamilton, Rachel Kempson
Sydney Pollack
Widescreen Anamorphic 1.85:1
English: Dolby Digital 4.0, French: Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo
PG - Some material may not be suitable for children. Parents urged to give parental guidance. May contain some material parents might not like for their young children.
age 13+
Common Sense rating OK for kids 13+
age 13+

Common Sense Note

Parents need to know that this engrossing period drama based on the biography of Danish baroness and her life in 1900s Africa offers lots of historical interest and sweeping romance, but tweens and younger may have trouble keeping interested through this long film. There's no swearing and nudity, though the film certainly treads on mature subjects. There's a marriage of convenience, and one character catches syphilis from her philandering husband, which renders her infertile but doesn't destroy her. Some scenes depict animals being whipped; discussions about war hover over a section of the film; and there are a number of deaths to illness and accidents.

Sexual Content

A woman talks about having lovers; at one point, she's involved with two brothers. A new husband takes the arrangement a little too lightly, flirting with a woman at his wedding. The couple is shown snuggling under a blanket, ostensibly naked though only their bare shoulders hint at what has transpired. Later, she catches a sexually transmitted disease, syphilis, from him after he is unfaithful. After being cured, she takes up with another man, with whom she's very affectionate. (We see them kiss but not much else).


Characters tote rifles, as appropriate for the time and the locale. They use them mostly for hunting. A woman shoots a bird and it's shown getting hit and falling from the sky. Animals are flogged. Lions feast on cattle. A person slaps another. Hunters stalk lions with guns as one feasts on the carcass of a deer; they both hit one apiece.


Not applicable

Social Behavior

An imperialist theme permeates the movie, as befits its plot. This is Kenya in the early 1900s, when Europeans descended on the continent. Locals are treated like slaves, though one man makes it clear he doesn't believe in this sense of entitlement. Women are seen as second-class citizens; for instance, one is given the cold shoulder when she enters a café/bar that forbids women entry. But she defies expectations and conventions, and evolved into a person who can stand on her own, through fear, change, and heartbreak.


In the beginning, one character appears very attached to her belongings; she name-drops the brand, Limoges.

Drugs / Tobacco / Alcohol

Characters imbibe whiskey and wine.

  • Age appropriate
  • Not an issue
  • Depends on your child and your family
  • Parents strongly cautioned
  • Not appropriate for kids of the age

This information for parents is provided by Common Sense Media, a non-profit organization dedicated to improving kids' media lives.

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