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Of Human Hearts (1938)

Passed  -  Drama | Western  -  11 February 1938 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 567 users  
Reviews: 22 user | 5 critic

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 »

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(screen play), (story), 1 more credit »
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Title: Of Human Hearts (1938)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Ethan Wilkins
...
Jason Wilkins
...
Mary Wilkins
Guy Kibbee ...
George Ames
...
Dr. Charles Shingle
...
President Lincoln
...
Annie Hawks
...
Jim Meeker
Leona Roberts ...
Sister Clarke
...
Quid
Clem Bevans ...
Elder Massey
Arthur Aylesworth ...
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

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 »

Quotes

Rev. Ethan Wilkins: [after Jason has rejected and mocked the old black coat that sister Clarke has donated him] Pride... Pride and selfishness. They're out of place in our family, Jason. Unless you conquer them they're going to make you unhappy, and those who love you unhappy, too. All you seem to think about is that "doctor book."
Jason Wilkins: Well, suppose I do? I'd rather save bodies than souls any day!
Rev. Ethan Wilkins: I'm sorry you said that, son. Sorry you mistake that cold frankness of yours for courage. Come outside, please.
Jason Wilkins: Now, wait a...
[...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in Hollywoodism: Jews, Movies and the American Dream (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

The Battle Cry of Freedom
(1862) (uncredited)
Written by George Frederick Root
Snippet played in the montage at the start of the Civil war
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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