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The Fallen Sparrow (1943)

6.8
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 691 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 10 critic

In 1940, a former prisoner is determined to find the killer of the New York Police Lt. who helped him escape from a Nazi torture camp in Spain.

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(screen play), (novel)
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Title: The Fallen Sparrow (1943)

The Fallen Sparrow (1943) on IMDb 6.8/10

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
John 'Kit' McKittrick
...
Toni Donne
Walter Slezak ...
Dr. Christian Skaas
Patricia Morison ...
Barby Taviton
Martha O'Driscoll ...
Whitney 'The Imp' Parker
Bruce Edwards ...
Ab Parker
...
Anton
John Miljan ...
Inspector 'Toby' Tobin
...
Otto Skaas
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Storyline

A former Spanish Civil War prisoner, John McKittrick arrives in New York to find the truth behind the death of his friend Louie Lepetino. He finds himself being chased by Nazi agents who want an item he has brought back from Spain and cannot give up. When another of his friends is murdered, McKittrick realizes that he cannot trust anyone around him - not anyone. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

nazi | torture | police | escape | spy | See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

21 August 1944 (Portugal)  »

Also Known As:

The Fallen Sparrow  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Many cast members in studio records/casting call lists did not appear or were not identifiable in the movie. These were (with their character names): Russell Wade (Ab Hamilton), Russ Powell (Priest), 'James Farley' (Bartender), Charles Lung (Carlo), Martin Faust (Chef at Carlo's Cafe), Lillian West (Receptionist), Miles Mander (Dr. Gudmundson) and Edith Evanson (Nurse). A modern source lists Russell Wade as a "Flower Seller", but there were no flower sellers in the film. See more »

Goofs

The Bust which is knocked through the window and crashes out on the street appears in it's original position in the next shot. See more »

Quotes

John 'Kit' McKittrick: [First Lines]
[Thinking, not speaking out loud]
John 'Kit' McKittrick: All right. Go on. Let's have it. Can you go through with it? Have you got the guts for it? Or have they knocked it out of you? Have they made you yellow?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits: "...in a world at war many sparrows must fall ... See more »

Connections

Featured in The John Garfield Story (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Better Plot Premise
3 December 2009 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

The Spanish Civil War was never a popular subject to begin with for Hollywood, but in 1943 two films would come about it. The first was Paramount's big budget For Whom The Bell Tolls and the second made for considerably less was The Fallen Sparrow about a veteran of that conflict's and the quest after him.

Before just membership in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade blacklisted you from all kinds of places after, people returned after the loss of the war by the Republic to the Falangists without any of the problems that John Garfield faces in The Fallen Sparrow. But it seems as though Garfield managed to cop a battle flag from some old European house that is in sympathy with the Nazis. Believe it or not, Adolph Hitler is going through some really unbelievable lengths to get it back.

Maybe if Garfield had some secret chemical formula stashed somewhere I might have gotten the plot of this film. But for the life of me if it weren't for Garfield's strong performance as a veteran who underwent all kinds of sophisticated torture, the film would have been laughable. So while the plot premise was ridiculous, Garfield's performance anticipates by several years other films about brainwashing techniques on prisoners and the readjustment to civilian life which Garfield never quite makes.

In any event back from the Spanish Civil War and before America gets into World War II, Garfield finds himself involved with some strange foreign refugee types as he goes looking for the murderer of a New York City cop and pal of his who arranged his escape from the clutches of the new Falangist government under Francisco Franco. The most sinister of them and he usually is in these films is Walter Slezak.

In her memoirs Maureen O'Hara said that Garfield was a delightful person to work with even though she was far from sympathetic with his politics. She had no hesitation in labeling him a Communist. In point of fact Garfield was a strong New Deal Democrat who in his years growing up poor and later in the Group Theater made some friends who unashamedly were Communists. They called people like him 'fellow travelers' back in those old bad old days.

The Fallen Sparrow would have been a lot better film had it been given a stronger plot premise.


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