IMDb > Our Town (1940)
Our Town
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Our Town (1940) More at IMDbPro »

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Our Town -- Change comes slowly to a small New Hampshire town in the early 20th century. People grow up, get married, live, and die. Milk and the newspaper get delivered every morning, and nobody locks their front doors.
Our Town -- The classic look at small town life.

Overview

User Rating:
6.8/10   1,647 votes »
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Popularity: ?
Down 13% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Thornton Wilder (play)
Thornton Wilder (screenplay) ...
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Our Town on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
24 May 1940 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
The screen's most unusual picture. See more »
Plot:
Change comes slowly to a small New Hampshire town in the early 20th century. People grow up, get married... See more » | Full synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for 6 Oscars. Another 2 wins See more »
NewsDesk:
(164 articles)
TCM Oscar Homage Kicked Off Today: Is Bigger Always Better?
 (From Alt Film Guide. 1 February 2016, 10:33 PM, PST)

Remembering Oscar-Winning Gwtw Art Director Menzies
 (From Alt Film Guide. 28 January 2016, 3:24 PM, PST)

The Southerner
 (From Trailers from Hell. 26 January 2016, 10:22 AM, PST)

User Reviews:
I liked it See more (48 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Directed by
Sam Wood 
 
Writing credits
Thornton Wilder (play)

Thornton Wilder (screenplay) &
Frank Craven (screenplay) &
Harry Chandlee (screenplay)

Produced by
Sol Lesser .... producer
 
Original Music by
Aaron Copland 
 
Cinematography by
Bert Glennon 
 
Film Editing by
Sherman Todd 
 
Production Design by
William Cameron Menzies 
 
Art Direction by
Lewis J. Rachmil 
 
Set Decoration by
James W. Payne (uncredited)
 
Production Management
Barney Briskin .... production manager (uncredited)
Alfred Raboch .... unit manager (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
John Sherwood .... assistant director
Lee Sholem .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Julia Heron .... interiors
Harry Horner .... associate production designer
 
Sound Department
Paul Neal .... sound technician
Thomas T. Moulton .... sound recordist (uncredited)
 
Visual Effects by
Jack Cosgrove .... special photographic effects
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Robert Coburn .... still photographer (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Edward P. Lambert .... wardrobe
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Irvin Talbot .... orchestral director
Louis Kaufman .... musician: violin (uncredited)
Jerome Moross .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Edward P. Goodnow .... technical advisor
Sol Lesser .... presenter
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
90 min | 89 min (Hypercube restored version)
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Certification:
Argentina:Atp | USA:Not Rated | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (PCA #6071)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Frank Craven who plays the Narrator also helped Thornton Wilder adapt his play for the screen.See more »
Goofs:
Errors in geography: The Stage Manager mentions the "Boston train" and the "Albany train" passing through Grover's Corners, NH. The Boston-Albany train line did not (and does not) enter New Hampshire.See more »
Quotes:
Mrs. Julia Hersey Gibbs:It seems to me, once in your life, before you die, you ought to see a country where they don't speak any English and they don't even want to.See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
Art Thou Weary, Art Thou Languid?See more »

FAQ

How does the movie end?
Is 'Our Town' based on a book?
What is 'Our Town' about?
See more »
26 out of 29 people found the following review useful.
I liked it, 23 February 2004
Author: preppy-3 from United States

I've never read the play or seen it performed. All I knew is that it won a Pulitzer Prize and was constantly being done by community theatres. Also there are at least FOUR made for TV versions (this is the only theatrical one). I figured it was time I finally saw it.

From what I can gather, this is a heavily edited version (the TV versions run from 2 to 3 hours) and I KNOW the ending was changed (because of the Production Code). Still I liked it for what it was. Also I saw a recently restored version so it looks pretty good (considering it's over 60 years old).

It's just about life in a small New Hampshire town from 1901 to 1940. It concerns various characters but mostly centers on Emily Webb (Martha Scott) falling in love with George Gibbs (William Holden). It also flawlessly recreates a small town in the early 20th century. Everybody knows everybody else, they all live comfortably with each other, nobody locks their doors at night...combine that with some breath taking production design by William Cameron Menzies and it creates a very comfortable, idyllic feeling. Also some of the shots of the town at night were just beautiful.

A lot of people complain about the total lack of chemistry between Scott and Holden. They're not wrong but this was Scott's first film and Holden's third (I believe)...they were still young and learning. As it is, it's incredible to see Holden so young, handsome and full of life. Scott is very good also and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress for this. They're backed up by a great cast of character actors from he 1930s--basically, nobody is bad. This didn't move me to tears like others said it did, but it WAS very moving. I'd like to see the other versions.

So, a pretty good view of small town life in the early 20th century.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Our Town (1940)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
the ending.. SPOILERS mockingbirdfreak
Depressing ending jiw2
A few Questions that I need help on... anunknownstory
A lovely new short film about it Michelle1969
Original book/script text? Valmier
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