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The Good Earth (1937)

Passed | | Drama, Romance | 6 August 1937 (USA)
The story of a farmer in China: a story of humility and bravery. His father gives Wang Lung a freed slave as wife. By diligence and frugality the two manage to enlarge their property. But ... See full summary »

Directors:

, (uncredited) | 2 more credits »

Writers:

(screen play), (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Lotus
...
...
Cuckoo
Soo Yong ...
...
Elder Son
Roland Lui ...
Younger Son
Suzanna Kim ...
Little Fool
Ching Wah Lee ...
...
Cousin
Olaf Hytten ...
William Law ...
Gateman
Mary Wong ...
Little Bride
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Storyline

The story of a farmer in China: a story of humility and bravery. His father gives Wang Lung a freed slave as wife. By diligence and frugality the two manage to enlarge their property. But then a famine forces them to leave their land and live in the town. However it turns out to be a blessing in disguise for them... Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

farmer | famine | slave | money | city | See All (253) »

Taglines:

China . . . . Land of unrest . . . tomorrow they may Starve !

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 August 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La buena tierra  »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,800,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

(Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film's budget was $2.8 million - a huge amount at the time. See more »

Goofs

Unexplained sequence of events or possible error in continuity. Toward the beginning of the film, Farmer Wang walks to the Great House to meet his bride, O-Lan. He is carrying a basket. It appears to be empty. As he enters a market, the farmer declines to buy peaches. We don't see him purchase goods or trade for anything. We don't see him filling the basket. However, the next scene shows him at the door of the house with a full basket. Later, he does buy peaches. At this point, however, we're still not made aware how he has money or silver. See more »

Quotes

Aunt: When a farmer buys silk robes and washes his whole body every day, there's a woman. That's sure !
Uncle: But a rich man may have two wives but the wife must cling to her husband. That is as it should be.
Aunt: That's right. A woman is allowed but one mistake.
Uncle: Of course. Now then, it is said: you may see a teapot with four teacups, but did you ever see a teacup with four teapots ?
Aunt: It is also said: do you ever see two spoons in the same bowl that do not knock against each other ?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Introduction played with opening credits: The soul of great nation is expressed in the life of its humblest people. In this simple story of a Chinese farmer may be found something of a the soul of china - its humility, its courage, its deep heritage from the past and its vast promise for the future. See more »

Connections

Referenced in M*A*S*H: Of Moose and Men (1975) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A Classic
22 July 2006 | by (Sacramento, CA) – See all my reviews

This film was released the year I was born and will be, like me, 70 in 2007. I watched it again last night having not seen it since high school. While it was full of 30's sentiment and the acting was a bit stereotyped, nevertheless, it was superb. Pearl S. Buck's story did come alive through the magic of the chemistry of Luise Rainer and Paul Muni. The novel which earned Ms. Buck the Nobel Prize for literature comes alive under the baton of Sydney Franklin which along with an excellent script recounts the story of peasant farmer, Wang Lung, whose father obtains a bride for him, a slave girl from the kitchen of a local landlord. In Buck's story, Wang's success is underwritten by his willingness to listen to his wife, most of the time, and the love of the land. In the end he comes to realize that his wife, like the land, is the source of his wealth, happiness and immortality. Buck's stories always had strong women cast in a critical spot to influence the outcome of events in the pre-feminist world. The German-born Luise Rainer brings a tentative but determined Peasant Chinese woman to life in her portrayal of Olan. Muni likewise captures the naive but honorable Wang, eventually caught between the two worlds of the wealthy and the peasant. Other classic characters include Charlie Grapewin, Dorothy Gale's Kansan Uncle Henry from the Wizard of Oz, Walter Connelly as the mewing, conniving uncle and Keye Luke as Number One Son-- but this time, not Charlie Chan's.

A classic might be defined as a movie you can watch time and again and never tire of. If that's indeed the case, this film is a classic, no doubt whatsoever.


14 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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