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Stanley and Livingstone

Stanley and Livingstone(1939)

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FULL SYNOPSIS

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In the 1800's, Henry M. Stanley, a reporter for James Gordon Bennett, Jr. of the New York Herald , emerges from the snowbound Comanche country bearing an exclusive interview with a rampaging Indian chief. Back in New York, Bennett impresses Stanley with the importance of finding long-missing British doctor David Livingstone in Africa, the biggest news story in the world. Stanley accepts the assignment and, accompanied by Indian scout Jeff Slocum, voyages to Zanzibar, where he meets Eve Kingsley. Fearful of the ravages that Africa has visited upon her late mother and enfeebled father, Eve urges him to give up the mission. Stanley ignores Eve's advice and assembles a safari. Pushing westward, the safari is beset by hostile native attacks and ravaged by fever, but just as things seem hopeless, natives bring word of Livingstone's location. With renewed hope, Stanley pushes on until he finds the doctor living in a native village, practicing medicine and preaching the gospel. To the reporter's surprise, Livingstone insists upon remaining in Africa to carry on his good works, and he gradually converts Stanley to his discipline. Believing that the curtains hiding Africa must be opened, the doctor shows Stanley maps of his previous explorations. After Livingstone is stricken with fever, Stanley returns to London, where he creates a world sensation with his stories of Livingstone's works. However, the British Geographical Society, influenced by the publisher of the London Globe , which has printed news of Livingstone's death, refuses to accept Stanley's evidence. As the society rejects Stanley's claims, word comes that Livingstone has died of fever, and as his last request he asked that Stanley carry on the work that he began. Honoring Livingstone's dying wish, Stanley gives up his job to return to Africa.