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John Francis Dillon
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John Francis Dillon
An American newspaperman and his wife, caught in the London blitz, lose their unborn child in an air raid. Outraged, they visit a shelter for homeless children where they fall in love with orphans Margaret and her brother Peter. They eventaully adopt the children and bring them to America. Written by
Herman Seifer <firstname.lastname@example.org>
[the censor cuts out most of Davis' writing about his experiences during the blitz]
All I have to show for my month in England is a few brilliant paragraphs ending with three sentences deleted here.
You'll find we're perfectly willing to sacrifice your chance to win a Pulitzer Prize for our chance to win the war.
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"Journey for Margaret" is a propaganda film but with a twist. Made in 1942, right after the U.S. entered World War II, it's based on a real story. A reporter, John Davis (Robert Young), and his wife Nora(Laraine Day) are caught in London during the blitz. Nora loses the baby she is carrying and eventually goes home to the states. John stays, but the passion that made him a powerful writer is gone. He's seen too much hopelessness and futility. While working an air raid, he helps to save a little boy, Peter, from a home where the rest of the family is killed. It leaves an indelible impression on him.
John meets Peter again when he visits an orphanage run by Trudy Strauss (Fay Bainter). There he also meets a very traumatized little girl, Margaret (Margaret O'Brien). Peter and Margaret bond with John. When it comes time for him to leave England, he wants to bring them with him to the states and adopt them. But all the flights to Lisbon are full for months in advance, and the only way he can bring them is to bring them as his 40 pound luggage limit. So that means only one child can go with him.
This is a really interesting film with excellent acting from everyone. Young gives a heartfelt performance, and Day is very touching as his wife. Margaret O'Brien, even at age 4 or 5, was capable of strong emotional acting.
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