AFRICAN SUMMER by Jack & Mike Couffer


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Alternating their home movie-style commentary, the father-and-son team that shared their unusual Galapagos Summer (1975) now takes us to Kenya for the shooting of the TV series Born Free. On location is a full complement of characters--including gypsy Eddie, a one-time used car salesman turned animal trainer--and more tame lions than you can shake a stick at. While Jack, the cameraman, tells how lion attacks and elephant charges are staged through a rough combination of savvy and daredevil slapstick, young Mike and his buddy Charles indulge in some harmless horsing around--with a docile pythom they show off to impress the tourists and the chameleons who ride their hands masquerading as fly-catching ""pistols."" On days off from the shooting, the boys make a chance archaeological find of an 8,000-year-old fossilized skeleton (there's a letter of thanks from the British Institute in Eastern Africa) and Dad muses on the conflict between population growth and game conservation or the march of the ever-encroaching Sahara. The roughly edited mix of education and show biz is indeed about what one would expect from those 6 P.M. TV travelogues--definitely not a prime time attraction but easy to tune in on.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1976
Publisher: Putnam