A simple peasant is forced to take up arms to defend his farm during the Spanish Civil War. Along the way he falls in love with Russian whose father is involved in espionage.

Director:

Writer:

(original screenplay)
Reviews

Watch Now

$0.00 with Prime Video

Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Famous Spanish bandit Artiguez returns to his native Spanish village after 20 years in French exile but Spanish cop Vinolas is setting a trap for him.

Director: Fred Zinnemann
Stars: Gregory Peck, Anthony Quinn, Omar Sharif
Certificate: Passed Drama | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In Panama, Maggie King meets soldier Skid Johnson on his last day in the army and reluctantly agrees to a date to celebrate. The two become involved in a nightclub brawl which causes Maggie... See full summary »

Director: Mitchell Leisen
Stars: Carole Lombard, Fred MacMurray, Charles Butterworth
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Through a fluke circumstance a ruthless woman stumbles across a suitcase filled with $60,000, and she is determined to hold onto it even it if means murder.

Director: Byron Haskin
Stars: Lizabeth Scott, Don DeFore, Dan Duryea
Dead End (1937)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The Dead End Kids, an unemployed architect, and gangster Baby Face Martin interact with an East Side neighborhood over one day and night.

Director: William Wyler
Stars: Sylvia Sidney, Joel McCrea, Humphrey Bogart
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A rich businessman wants to marry his secretary, but first he has to pass muster with her middle-class family.

Director: Reinhold Schünzel
Stars: Robert Young, Lana Turner, Lew Ayres
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

The first female doctor in New York City comes up against prejudice from male counterparts who feel threatened by her skills. Eventually, though, they come to respect her and romance ... See full summary »

Director: John Sturges
Stars: June Allyson, Arthur Kennedy, Gary Merrill
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A $50,000 life-insurance sale puts mild-mannered Henry Twinkle on the fast track at Ajax Insurance Company. Now he can marry his girl and climb the corporate ladder -- just as long as the ... See full summary »

Director: Leslie Fenton
Stars: Lew Ayres, Rita Johnson, Lloyd Nolan
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Berkeley university professor adjusts (using alcohol) to tragic fire deaths of wife & son.

Director: Fletcher Markle
Stars: Ray Milland, John Hodiak, Nancy Reagan
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

Miss Bayles (May Robson) has been trying to close down a business operated by Clarence (Alan Hale). Clarence runs a crooked gambling operation in the back room. Miss Bayles uses Clarence's ... See full summary »

Director: John S. Robertson
Stars: May Robson, Mary Carlisle, Fred MacMurray
Ivy (1947)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An Edwardian belle meets a rich bachelor, but what to do about her husband and her lover?

Director: Sam Wood
Stars: Joan Fontaine, Patric Knowles, Herbert Marshall
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

Detective Sam Campbell and his perky sidekick Robby Vance are called in on a routine child support dispute. Things take an unexpected turn when the client's ex-father-in-law, the head of a ... See full summary »

Director: William Clemens
Stars: Jane Wyman, Jerome Cowan, Faye Emerson
Prosperity (1932)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In 1925, John becomes President of the prosperous Warren Bank when Maggie retires. Six years later, John, Helen and the two children are happy in their home, but the two mother-in-laws are ... See full summary »

Director: Sam Wood
Stars: Marie Dressler, Polly Moran, Anita Page
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Marco
Leo Carrillo ...
Luis
...
Andre Gallinet
...
Edward Grant
Vladimir Sokoloff ...
Basil, Norma's Father
Robert Warwick ...
Vallejo
Fred Kohler ...
Pietro (as Fred Kohler Sr.)
Carlos De Valdez ...
Major Del Rio
Peter Godfrey ...
Roderigo - Cafe Magician
Nick Thompson ...
Beppo
Rosina Galli ...
Waitress
William B. Davidson ...
Commandant (as Wm. B. Davidson)
Lupita Tovar ...
Cabaret Girl
...
Peasant Girl
Edit

Storyline

A simple peasant is forced to take up arms to defend his farm during the Spanish Civil War. Along the way he falls in love with Russian whose father is involved in espionage. Written by Herman Seifer <alagain@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Romance under Fire ! Love versus Bullets and a million souls

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 June 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Castles in Spain  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Disclaimer on film and connected paper - Note: Care has been taken to prevent any costume of the production from being accurately that of either side in the Spanish civil war. The story does not attempt to favor any cause in the present conflict, See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Marco: Where is the conscience of the world?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Legacy of the Hollywood Blacklist (1987) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A rather flat film that is afraid to challenge or take sides, with a romance that doesn't really engage
23 August 2004 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Marco is a simple Spanish farmer who is forced to stand up and be counted when he takes up arms to protect his country during the civil war. When his heroics and bravery sees him promoted up the ranks, Marco finds things complicated when he starts to fall in love with a woman who's father turns out to be a Russian spy. The couple try to deal with their feelings while they find themselves on opposite sides of the war.

Boasting the tagline 'the most important film of 1938' and having been awarded Oscars at the time of its release, I decided to watch this film and see what the fuss was about. What I found was a film that is too self-consciously cautious to be great fun, too worthy to be involving and ends up being rather dull and uninteresting. The basic plot is set around the Spanish civil war but it appears to have been careful about coming down on either side of the argument and therefore is so balanced that it almost cancels out any content that may have been challenging or informative. This leaves a story about personalities and the central romance, which is a problem because the film doesn't deal with these very well either. The romance tries to be bleak and supposedly doomed but it just can't get the tone right and it never really gets anywhere near as emotive as it needed to be – certainly this is no Casablanca.

With the script problems and rather drab direction, the film only occasionally gets close to being really impacting and involving and it was only the moments where the horrors of the conflict are allowed to get above political neutrality that the film comes to life – but these are too infrequent. The cast are set adrift and do the best they can to squeeze emotion and drama out of the script but their efforts just seem out of place against a rather flat backdrop. Fonda is always watchable even if his 'good honest man' is a rather dull character and, for that reason, hard to get behind; certainly modern audiences may find his unquestioning patriotism and simple morals hard to swallow. Carroll is better than the film deserves, her performance is very good and it is just a shame that the rest of the film doesn't come up to her level of work. Support is OK but the script doesn't fill the film that well and most of the cast are given little to do.

Overall this may well have been the 'most important film of 1938' but it doesn't do a great deal today. The film doesn't inform and isn't interesting as it carefully treads the complexities of the conflict – and Fonda's final to-camera rant about peace is too little, too late and just comes across as being rather pat. The romance could have saved it but this too is fluffed despite the best efforts of Carroll, but Fonda, despite being worth a look, plays it all to simplistically in line with the material.


9 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss Blockade (1938) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?