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Four Sons (1940)

Approved  |   |  Drama, History, War  |  14 June 1940 (USA)
6.0
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Ratings: 6.0/10 from 69 users  
Reviews: 3 user | 2 critic

When the Germans invade Czechoslovakia the four sons of a Czecho-German family follow different paths: Czech patriot, Nazi supporter, artist in America, and heroic German soldier.

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(original screenplay), (suggested by a story by), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Chris
Eugenie Leontovich ...
Frau Bern
Mary Beth Hughes ...
Anna
Alan Curtis ...
Karl
George Ernest ...
Fritz
Robert Lowery ...
Joseph
Lionel Royce ...
Max Sturm
Sig Ruman ...
Newmann (as Sig Rumann)
Ludwig Stössel ...
Pastor (as Ludwig Stossel)
Christian Rub ...
Kapek
Torben Meyer ...
Gustav
Egon Brecher ...
Richter
Eleanor Wesselhoeft ...
Frau Richter
Michael Visaroff ...
Burgomaster
Greta Meyer ...
Frau Sturm
Edit

Storyline

When the Germans invade Czechoslovakia the four sons of a Czecho-German family follow different paths: Czech patriot, Nazi supporter, artist in America, and heroic German soldier.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 June 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Eran cuatro hijos  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Arthur Loft is in studio records/casting call lists for an unnamed role, but he was not seen in the movie. See more »

Connections

Edited into All This and World War II (1976) See more »

Soundtracks

German National Anthem (Das Lied der Deutschen)
(1841) (uncredited)
(Also called 'Deutschland Über Alles")
Music by Joseph Haydn (1797)
Variations played in the score often
Played also by a marching band
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Brother against Brother - familiar plot
6 February 2006 | by (New York City) – See all my reviews

Made in 1940 before we entered World War II, it is always interesting to see how Hollywood tried to warn the U.S. about the dangers Europe was facing and the horrors yet to come. The beginning starts with a love twist. Anna is dating Chris, doesn't love him, realizes she loves brother Karl, a fight between brothers takes place with Karl and Anna marrying and the story begins. The night of their wedding, Karl is summoned to attend to a matter of political urgency. He leaves but Chris overhears what was said and takes off to warn the targets of the upcoming Nazi reprisals. He gets to town too late and finds the damage already done . The Burgermeister is dead and other enemies of the state have been taken away or have met similar fates. Chris is spotted and tries to run for cover. He is shot and fires back. Unbeknowst to him, he shoots his brother. Stumbling back to the house, mama and youngest brother Fritz hide him in the barn. Karl is brought home alive on a stretcher to await the doctor. In the meantime, Anna, the devout wife threatens to turn Chris in to the Nazi's. On the same night, The Fuhrer is to pass through their town bestowing them with the highest honor. Karl's men search every room in the house for a sniper and are told by Mama that Carl has died. Mama begs Anna not to give Chris up, but her anger overtakes her and at the last minute she does. Chris is shot and killed just as Hitler's entourage is coming through. Son Joseph was sent off to America early on and has been trying to bring Mama and youngest son Fritz to join him. Just as the papers come through, the Nazi's are already preparing all the young boys to prepare to fight. We see 10 year ODs with mock rifles and gas masks goose stepping outside her house. She is given another Iron Cross, (the first was her husband's) as Fritz died bravely in the line of duty earlier. This prompts her to go to Anna and beg her to put their differences aside and join her in the U.S. for the sake of her toddler grandchild. Anna agrees and they board the train to take them to the ship overseas. A most touching scene is when Mama is in the house alone and is about to eat, says a prayer over the food and is visited by the spirits of all four sons sitting with her at the table. She begs them not to go as they start to fade out. The pastor knocks on the door to tell her that her authorization papers have come through. At that point, she thinks Fritz (an adorable son - so sweet and loving) is still alive having just left to fight. She says that she cannot go because what will Fritz do when he comes home. The pastor tells her that Chris will not come home as he is already dead. The night that Fritz left on the train, she went out in the pouring to give him a basket of food to take with him holding his hand while the train is pulling out.


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