6.9/10
705
24 user 4 critic

Of Human Hearts (1938)

Passed | | Drama, Western | 11 February 1938 (USA)
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 ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screen play), (story "Benefits Forgot") (as Honoré Morrow)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Jason Wilkins
...
Mary Wilkins
...
George Ames
...
Dr. Charles Shingle
...
President Lincoln
...
Annie Hawks
...
Jim Meeker
Leona Roberts ...
Sister Clarke
...
Quid
...
Elder Massey
...
Rufus Inchpin
Gene Reynolds ...
Jason Wilkins as a Child
Leatrice Joy Gilbert ...
Annie Hawks as a Child
...
Chauncey Ames
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Storyline

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@sumter.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's Great $5,000 Title Contest Picture

Genres:

Drama | Western

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

11 February 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Benefits Forgot  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

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) See more »

Goofs

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. See more »

Quotes

Rev. Ethan Wilkins: Jason, this is an important event in sister Clarke's life, our stopping here tonight. She never had a minister visit her before.
Jason Wilkins: Well, I don't wonder at that. But that frog, pop - why, it made me sick!
Rev. Ethan Wilkins: Suppose I'd called her attention to it, told her it was there? She never would have recovered from the mortification. The only time the minister ever stopped for her... it wasn't easy, but I swallowed it. That, sir, is my idea of courtesy. And I wish you not to forget it.
Jason Wilkins: I understand, father.
See more »


Soundtracks

The Sweet By-and-By
(1868) (uncredited)
Music by J.P. Webster
Words by S. Fillmore Bennett
Played on an organ by Ann Rutherford and sung by the church congregation
See more »

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User Reviews

 
This poignant, honest and sometimes heart-wrenching film is a rare, 4 star gem about real life.



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 compelling story about striving for excellence, the reality and tension fathers and sons can experience when a son comes of age, and the love of a mother that can never die.

While both inspiring and at times reminding us of our own failures, it provides a message of hope as well. There is a richness here that is timeless. This film develops its characters at the beginning, not rushing to get to the point. You get to know them. The Civil War elements are very much in the background and clearly secondary to the main theme. This is not a war movie. It is a story about real people.

The surprise at the end of this drama is both forceful and full of genuine emotion. A absolute must see for John Huston and Jimmy Stewart fans, and deserves to be a classic in its own right. Easily one of Stewart's best.


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