The Macomber Affair, with an African hunt background, isn’t particularly pleasant in content, even though action often is exciting and elements of suspense frequently hop up the spectator. Certain artificialities of presentation, too, and unreal dialog are further strikes against picture [based on a short story by Ernest Hemingway], although portion of footage filmed in Africa is interesting.
Robert Preston enacts role of Francis Macomber, a rich American with an unhappy wife (Joan Bennett), who arrives at Nairobi and hires Gregory Peck, a white hunter, to take him lion hunting. On the safari, this time in cars, Macomber can’t stand up under a lion charge and his wife sees him turn coward. The white hunter kills the lion. Thereafter, Macomber broods over his shame and his wife falls for the hunter.
African footage is cut into the story with showmanship effect, and these sequences build up suspense satisfactorily. There are closeups of lions and other denizens of the veldt, and scenes in which lion and water buffalo charge, caught with telescopic lenses by camera crew sent to Africa from England, will stir any audience. These focal points of the story out-interest the human drama as developed in scripters’ enmeshing trio of stars.