Of Mice and Men (1939)

Approved  |   |  Drama  |  12 January 1940 (USA)
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Reviews: 56 user | 11 critic

George Milton and Lennie Small are migrant workers in the 1930s Depression. Lennie is mentally disabled and George looks after him. While working as hands on a Western ranch, they dream of ... See full summary »



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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 1 win. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Betty Field ...
Roman Bohnen ...
Oscar O'Shea ...
Granville Bates ...
Leigh Whipper ...
Helen Lynd ...


George Milton and Lennie Small are migrant workers in the 1930s Depression. Lennie is mentally disabled and George looks after him. While working as hands on a Western ranch, they dream of owning their own ranch and the opportunity may be available. Their current ranch is owned by a sadistic man who has a flirtatious wife. Written by dstern1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Unbridled "realism!" defying every tradition of the screen ! See more »




Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

12 January 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La fuerza bruta  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


"Theater Guild on the Air" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on May 8, 1949 with Burgess Meredith reprising his film role. See more »


When bedding down for the night at the river, George's hands change position. See more »


Crooks: Come on in. You might as well. Everybody's coming in. Kinda like a race track.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The movie begins before the credits are shown. George and Lennie are fleeing a mob. They board a boxcar on a moving train, and as they close the door of the boxcar we see the main title already written on the door of the boxcar. See more »


Referenced in The Outsiders (1983) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

10 February 2001 | by (Sacramento, CA) – See all my reviews

The first comment given here shows an incredible lack of understanding of Steinbeck in his California period. Our Irish friend's acrid comments show he obviously doesn't like Steinbeck and that's his privilege. Now, having said that, I must say he's wrong. This film is excellent. Just that. The cast is wonderful and the story is a classic: the destruction of innocence by cruel reality (viz: the title of the story taken from a line from a Robert Burns's poem). And, while Steinbeck was not one to let a sentimental moment pass by, e.g, Lennie's Christ-like innocence, inappropriate super-human strength which inadvertently wreaks havoc resulting in his euthanasia with the same instrument as used for Curley's dog, these scenes are never maudlin. Too, for the serious Steinbeck fan, there's more, much more. This story, and the play, created at Steinbeck's most experimental period, is fraught with symbolism. There's the "big" guy, a victim of the "little" guy's vanity. Many are not aware that Steinbeck was small (5'3") and very self-conscious about his size. The cast is outstanding: Betty Field's careless and bored character, Mae contrasts with the mighty innocence of Chaney's Lennie. There are the solid characters of Bickford's Slim, Meredith's George and Bohnen's Candy; Steele was at his best as the vain, pugnacious Curley; Veteran character actor, Noah Berry Jr. as Whit adds another element of sympathy. This is one of our American classic films. We invented and developed this genre of art and this film must stand as one of its finest examples.

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