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We Are Not Alone (1939)

7.1
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 214 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 3 critic

Warners' publicity releases, intended for newspapers,on this film state that Paul Muni worked closely with James Hilton on the adaptation of Hilton's book for this film. Given that most ... See full summary »

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(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: We Are Not Alone (1939)

We Are Not Alone (1939) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Dr. David Newcome
...
Leni Krafft
Flora Robson ...
Jessica Newcome
Raymond Severn ...
Gerald Newcome
...
Susan O'Connor, Newcome's Maid
...
Sir Ronald Dawson
Montagu Love ...
Major Millman
James Stephenson ...
Sir William Clintock
Stanley Logan ...
Sir Guy Lockhead
...
Judge
...
Archdeacon
Eily Malyon ...
Archdeacon's Wife
Douglas Scott ...
Tommy Baker
Crauford Kent ...
Dr. Stacey
May Beatty ...
Mrs. Patterson
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Storyline

Warners' publicity releases, intended for newspapers,on this film state that Paul Muni worked closely with James Hilton on the adaptation of Hilton's book for this film. Given that most publicity releases of the time (and also now) are best when taken with several grains of salt, this may or may not be true: Dr. David Newcome lives with his wife Jessica and son Gerald in the small English town of Calderbury. Jessica, conventional and somewhat stupid, is unable to understand the sensitive little boy and her stern, unsympathetic discipline aggravates Gerald's nervousness. The doctor is called to care for Leni, an Austrian dancer stranded in England, who has tried to commit suicide, and he decides she is just the person to hire as a governess for Gerald based on, evidently, no logic at all but it does move the plot. Jessica learns the true story of Leni's background and demands she be discharged. Dr. Newcome arranges to have Leni enrolled in a music school. Gerald, being sent away to ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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|

Release Date:

25 November 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

We Are Not Alone  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After one week of filming, Jane Bryan replaced Dolly Haas in the role of Leni, because Haas suffered a nervous collapse due to the "highly emotional nature of her role". See more »

Quotes

Dr. David Newcome: Strange how words can be true, and yet have no truth in them.
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Soundtracks

Symphony no. 94 ('Surprise'): Andante
(uncredited)
Music by Joseph Haydn
Whistled by Paul Muni and played several times during film
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User Reviews

The seams show
14 April 2002 | by See all my reviews

Part One of this interesting film concerns the loveless marriage of a kindly, patient and gentle village doctor to his cold, repressed and shrewish wife; each of them, as well as their young son, becomes a victim of this unfortunate union. Further domestic complications ensue when a young woman, adrift in the world and manifesting suicidal tendencies, enters their lives. Her obvious capacity to give and receive love captivates the doctor and his son, but increases the wife's bitterness and adds to the already considerable domestic tension. But all of this becomes secondary about 2/3 of the way through when a contrived circumstance results in the wife's death, which we know to be accidental but the law sees as a conspiracy between the doctor and the young woman to murder her. Thus, Part Two: arrest, incarceration, trial. Following a guilty verdict, the miscarriage of justice moves to the background, and we are given Part Three: scenes of stoic acceptance and acknowledgement of a highly spiritual love between the doctor and the young woman, both of whom have been condemned to die.

This promising tale loses its way not once, but twice. The unity it requires is noticeably lacking. A further distraction (because it does not meld with the main story) is the screen time devoted to villagers persecuting Germans earning a living in England as the clouds darken with the imminence of World War II.

There are excellent performances by two of the cinema's very best: Paul Muni and Flora Robson. The rest of the cast is impressive as well. If only the writers and director had been more conscientious about joining the parts.


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