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The Edge of the World (1937)

Passed  -  Drama | History | Romance  -  9 September 1938 (USA)
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 1,190 users  
Reviews: 24 user | 28 critic

A way of life is dying on an Outer Hebridean island fishing port, but some of the inhabitants resist evacuating to the mainland.

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Title: The Edge of the World (1937)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Belle Chrystall ...
Eric Berry ...
Kitty Kirwan ...
...
The Gray Family: James
Niall MacGinnis ...
The Gray Family: Andrew, His Son (as Niall Macginnis)
Grant Sutherland ...
The Catechist
Campbell Robson ...
George Summers ...
The Skipper
Edit

Storyline

A trio wanders the cliffs of an Outer Hebridean island and encounters a gravestone at the edge of a precipice; it reads, "Peter Manson ... gone over." One man in the trio knows the story of the gravestone and tells it to the others... It is ten years earlier, and the way of life on the island is dying; steam trawlers from the mainland threaten its survival as a fishing port. Peter Manson, one of the community's leaders, resists evacuating to the mainland, though his son Robbie is about to leave the island himself. Meanwhile, Robbie's twin sister plans to marry his best friend, Andrew Gray. Andrew and Robbie argue over evacuation and decide to settle the matter by racing to the top of a cliff. Ruth is terrified: she may lose them both. The race ends in tragedy, which tears apart the families of Manson and Gray. Times passes and Ruth reveals she is pregnant with an illegitimate child. This promises to bring the two families back together, but not before desperation hits the islanders. ... Written by sspurli

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 September 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A l'angle du monde  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

£20,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (1940 re-issue) | (1990 NFA-restoration) | (Milestone print)

Sound Mix:

(Marconi's Visatone System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The cast and crew stayed on Foula for many months. This was before the airstrip was built and they had to use local fishing boats as ferries. See more »

Goofs

The wild Golden Eagle at the beginning has the falconer's jesses (leather straps) visible. See more »

Crazy Credits

[at the end of the opening credits] And all the people on the lonely island of Foula where this story was made See more »

Connections

Referenced in Dad's Army: The Lion Has 'Phones (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

Psalm 23
(uncredited)
Composer unknown
Words from the biblical 23rd psalm
Sung a cappella by the congregation in church
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A cinematic record of European people meeting the 20th century.
11 September 2005 | by (virginia) – See all my reviews

This was the directors first film, and his budget was limited. Some of his "actors" were local inhabitants, and the sound is not 21st standards. Nonetheless, the film is a near historical record of the problems faced by a small group of people living on an isolated island that could no longer cope with the attraction of modern life which began to draw away its young people. Besides electricity and indoor plumbing, the 20th century offered work that attracted the young with work and modern medicine that enabled more of their children a chance to survive.

This movie shows the anguish that splits the opinion of those who realize their ancient way of life is no longer viable.

Although the island and people depicted in the movie were fictional, there was a real Shetland Island that did choose to move to the mainland. This movie was made in 1937, and a vivid picture of the transition of European people transitioning from the 19th century into the modern world.


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