Of Human Hearts (1938)

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    • Of Human Hearts (1938)




      Plot Summary
      This is a story about family relationships, set in the time before
      and during the American Civil War.
      Ethan Wilkins is a poor and honest man who ministers to the human soul,
      while his son Jason yearns to be a doctor, helping people in the earthly realm.
      It is a rich story about striving for excellence, the tension of father-son rebellion, and
      the love of a mother that can never die.
      Written by perrymv

      Walter Huston ... Ethan Wilkins
      James Stewart ... Jason Wilkins
      Beulah Bondi ... Mary Wilkins
      Guy Kibbee ...George Ames
      Charles Coburn ... Dr. Charles Shingle
      John Carradine ... President Lincoln
      Ann Rutherford ... Annie Hawks
      Charley Grapewin ... Jim Meeker
      Leona Roberts ... Sister Clarke
      Gene Lockhart ... Quid
      Clem Bevans ... Elder Massey
      Arthur Aylesworth ... Rufus Inchpin
      Gene Reynolds ... Jason Wilkins as a Child
      Leatrice Joy Gilbert ... Annie Hawks as a Child
      Sterling Holloway ... Chauncey Ames
      Charles Peck ... Chauncey Ames as a Child
      Robert McWade ... Dr. Lupus Crumm
      Minor Watson ... Capt. Griggs
      Ward Bond ... Lout Laughing in Church (uncredited)
      and many more...

      Clarence Brown

      Writing Credits
      Bradbury Foote ... (screen play)
      Honore Morrow ... (story "Benefits Forgot") (as Honoré Morrow)
      Conrad Richter ... (treatment contributor) (uncredited)

      John W. Considine Jr. ... producer
      Clarence Brown ... producer (uncredited)

      Herbert Stothart

      Clyde De Vinna ... (photographed by)

      Beulah Bondi portrayed James Stewart's mother five times:
      In It's a Wonderful Life (1946), Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939),
      Of Human Hearts (1938) and Vivacious Lady (1938), and once on his television series,
      The Jimmy Stewart Show (1971).

      The title was chosen in a nationwide contest MGM held on its radio program.
      The winner, high school student Ray Harris, not only won $5,000
      but also was a special guest at the world premiere of the movie
      in his hometown of Greenville, South Carolina. The film's battle scene cost $50,000 and required 2000 men to film. Ted Healy is on early production charts, but died before the end of filming. He is said to appear in one scene.

      The story takes place on a small town located on the Ohio River
      called "Pine Hill, Ohio". There is an actual town in Ohio by that name,
      but it is located in Carroll County, many miles north of that important waterway.

      President Lincoln quotes from William Shakespeare's "As You Like It":
      "Blow, blow, thou winter wind. / Thou art not so unkind / As man's ingratitude [...]
      / Freeze, freeze, thou bitter sky, / That dost not bite so nigh /
      As benefits forgot..." (Act II. Scene 7)

      Several actors listed in studio records were not seen in the film.
      These were, with their character names: Frank McGlynn Sr. (Lout),
      John Miljan (Captain Griggs), Frank Reicher (Officer),
      Willard Robertson (Recruiting Officer) and Morgan Wallace (Dr. Crandall)

      The film cast includes three Oscar winners: James Stewart, Charles Coburn,
      Walter Huston; and one Oscar nominee: Beulah Bondi.

      This film received its USA television premiere in Los Angeles
      Friday 23 November 1956 on KTTV (Channel 11) followed
      in Philadelphia Monday 2 September 1957 on WFIL (Channel 6);
      but it was not telecast in New York City until 7 April 1959
      on WCBS (Channel 2) and in San Francisco 27 April 1959 on KGO (Channel 7).

      The $72.50 for Jason's uniform in 1861 would be the equivalent of $2,010 in 2016

      At the congregation's initial offering meeting,
      a chicken in a wooden cage is placed on the table.
      In the next shot the cage has been turned 90 degrees
      (note the direction of the cage's handle).
      The basket with the cabbage is also in a different position.

      When James is told he can't have the magazines and sees they are going to Mr. Ame's son,
      he turns away to leave the room twice in successive shots.

      Memorable Quotes

      Filming Locations
      Agoura, California, USA
      Is this interesting?
      Big Bear Lake, Big Bear Valley, San Bernardino National Forest, California, USA
      Clarence Brown Ranch - Las Virgenes Road, Calabasas, California, USA
      Lake Arrowhead, San Bernardino National Forest, California, USA
      Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios - 10202 W. Washington Blvd., Culver City, California, USA (studio)
      Best Wishes
      London- England
    • Of Human Hearts is a 1938 American drama film
      directed by Clarence Brown and starring Walter Huston, James Stewart and Beulah Bondi.

      Stewart plays an proud and ungrateful son who rebels against
      his preacher father and (after his father's death) neglects his poverty-stricken mother.
      Bondi was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

      Production notes
      Principal photography occurred from October 18 to December 20, 1937.
      The working title of the film and the title of the novel on which it was based,
      Benefits Forgot, was taken from a quotation in William Shakespeare's
      As You Like It, Act II, Scene 7: "Freeze, freeze, thou bitter sky,
      that dost not bite so nigh as benefits forgot." The title of the picture, Of Human Hearts,
      was selected by MGM after a nationwide contest was advertised on the studio's radio program,
      Good News of 1938, to determine who could select the best title.
      The prize, $5,000, was awarded to Greenville, South Carolina, high school student Roy Harris.
      In addition to the prize money, Harris was also a specially invited guest at the film's world premiere,
      which was held in his hometown.

      Portions of the film were shot on location at the Agoura Ranch in Agoura, California,
      and at Lake Arrowhead, California.
      According to information in news items and the presskit,
      over 700 people worked at the Arrowhead location for more than two weeks
      on a specially built village, the largest special location site built by MGM since The Good Earth.
      A Life magazine article noted that the film's battle scene,
      which was not based on a specific battle, cost $50,000, and required 2,000 men to film.
      Life also noted that the picture was one of a "new cycle of interest in the Civil War
      aroused by the novel Gone With the Wind.

      Robert McWade, who portrayed Dr. Lupus Crumm in the picture, died after completing his role.
      According to news items in the Hollywood Citizen-News and Motion Picture Daily,
      director Clarence Brown had told McWade, "Well, Bob, you played your last scene.
      You might as well go home," just before McWade died of heart failure.

      Look out for Duke's 'Pals'
      Ward Bond, John Carradine, Beulah Bondhi, Charles Coburn

      User Review

      A mothers love is unconditional
      12 November 2005 | by lois74 (United States)
      I found this movie very heartwarming as I am a big fan of Jimmy Stewart. I wish movies were still made like this - with heart. It can be all to true to raise a son or daughter who grow up and they kind of forget about their parents. While I admit there are some rather cheesy parts I'd rather watch that than some of the crap that comes out of Hollywood these days! As a mother myself, the parts where she is basically giving her very last dime to send to her son were all too true. What mother would not give everything she had to give her children if she though they needed it? When the son talks to Abraham Lincoln (yes, I believe that was a little far fetched) but I could see a mother writing, believing her son dead, as that could be the only explanation as to why he has not written.
      All in all this movie was very heartwarming!! I guess to watch it you have to have a heart!
      Best Wishes
      London- England

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