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A Yank at Oxford (1938)

Passed  -  Drama | Romance | Sport  -  18 February 1938 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 699 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 5 critic

Lee Sheridan, a young American comes to study at Oxford University, but is instantly disliked by the other students, because of his brash and big-headed attitude. After several scrapes with... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lee Sheridan
Dan Sheridan
Molly Beaumont
Elsa Craddock
Dean of Cardinal
Griffith Jones ...
Paul Beaumont
C.V. France ...
Dean Snodgrass
Edward Rigby ...
Morton Selten ...
Cecil Davidson, Esq.
Claude Gillingwater ...
Ben Dalton
Tully Marshall ...
Walter Kingsford ...
Dean Williams
Robert Coote ...
Peter Croft ...
Noel Howlett ...
Tom Craddock


Lee Sheridan, a young American comes to study at Oxford University, but is instantly disliked by the other students, because of his brash and big-headed attitude. After several scrapes with the college professors, and the wife of the local book seller, he becomes a hero when he joins the rowing club, and coxes the boat crew to beat Cambridge, in the annual boat race. Written by

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Here's The Yankee Clipper Himself ! A two-fisted terror from the States . . . who landed in England with a chip on his shoulder . . . but let a blue-eyed beauty walk off with his heart ! Bob Taylor's Biggest Picture Hit !


Drama | Romance | Sport


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

18 February 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Yank at Oxford  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Jack Conway took over as director after Michael Balcon, who was to both produce and direct, quit after clashing with MGM chief Louis B. Mayer. Balcon stayed on as producer. See more »


Referenced in Hollywood Hist-o-Rama: Robert Taylor (1962) See more »


Academic Festival Overture in C, Opus 80
(1880) (uncredited)
Written by Johannes Brahms
Played as background for the first scene showing the college sign
See more »

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User Reviews

pre-Scarlet, pre-war, and pre-Waterloo Bridge
1 September 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Robert Taylor is "A Yank at Oxford," a 1938 comedy also starring Maureen O'Sullivan, Lionel Barrymore, Vivien Leigh, Edmund Gwenn, and Griffith Jones. Taylor is Lee Sheridan, an all-American athlete who is accepted into Cardinal College at Oxford and leaves his hometown and his dad (Barrymore) who owns a newspaper. Lee has no idea what he's in for, as his egotism makes him an easy mark for a fake "reception" by the students and other barbs. He immediately becomes attracted to the lovely Molly Beaumont (O'Sullivan), whose brother Paul (Jones) is having an affair with one Mrs. Craddock (Leigh). Due to a series of unfortunate events, Paul and Lee become mortal enemies. This film surely had the women drooling in 1938 as Taylor uses his muscular arms to row, his strong legs to run, and his beautiful smile to charm. He glistens with youth and vitality, and there are plenty of shots of "the world's most perfect profile" to please his fans. Normally Taylor exhibits a very likable personality in films, but in this one, he comes off as too aggressive, finally becoming aggravating to this viewer. He was probably directed that way so that he would appear as a bull in a china shop among all the Oxford gents. Taylor has fallen into disregard since declaring himself a good American and ratting out Howard da Silva and others during the '50s Communist witch hunts. No one came out a winner who was involved, not the victims nor the blabbermouths. The sad thing about Taylor is, he truly believed every word he said. If you can separate his politics from his career, he was a very good actor, a gorgeous man, and a very big star back in the day.

Maureen O'Sullivan is perky and pretty as Taylor's love interest - that same year, she and Taylor worked together in "The Crowd Roars." British actor Griffith Jones plays her brother and is not only excellent but very handsome. According to IMDb, he worked into the 1980s and is apparently still alive at 95. The supporting cast is marvelous, including Edmund Gwenn as a professor and Lionel Barrymore as Lee's proud father. Vivien Leigh plays a flaky, flirty bookshop owner married to a much older man and not adverse to a little hanky-panky on the side. It's not much of a role, and though she was a natural beauty, no one would have considered her for Scarlett just watching this film. Her last line, however, given the character she portrays, is hilarious. She and Taylor would meet again for the classic "Waterloo Bridge." "A Yank at Oxford" shows an England untouched by war and young men who worked at being superior athletes and gentlemen as they roamed the hallowed halls of Oxford. That would all end soon. It was a nice fairytale while it lasted.

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