IMDb > Mission to Moscow (1943)
Mission to Moscow
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Mission to Moscow (1943) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

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Up 15% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writers:
Joseph E. Davies (book)
Howard Koch (screenplay)
Contact:
View company contact information for Mission to Moscow on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
22 May 1943 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
One American's Journey into the Truth
Plot:
Ambassador Joseph Davies is sent by FDR to Russia to learn about the Soviet system and returns to America as an advocate of Stalinism. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. See more »
NewsDesk:
(22 articles)
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User Reviews:
The first casualty of war is truth See more (40 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Walter Huston ... Ambassador Joseph E. Davies
Ann Harding ... Mrs. Marjorie Davies
Oskar Homolka ... Maxim Litvinov, Foreign Minister

George Tobias ... Freddie

Gene Lockhart ... Premier Molotov

Eleanor Parker ... Emlen Davies
Richard Travis ... Paul
Helmut Dantine ... Maj. Kamenev
Victor Francen ... Vyshinsky, chief trial prosecutor

Henry Daniell ... Minister von Ribbentrop
Barbara Everest ... Mrs. Litvinov
Dudley Field Malone ... Winston Churchill
Roman Bohnen ... Mr. Krestinsky
Maria Palmer ... Tanya Litvinov
Moroni Olsen ... Col. Faymonville
Minor Watson ... Loy Henderson
Vladimir Sokoloff ... Mikhail Kalinin, USSR president
Maurice Schwartz ... Dr. Botkin
Joseph E. Davies ... Himself - in Prologue
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ernst Hausman ... Ship's Steward

John Abbott ... Grinko (uncredited)
Ernie Adams ... Heckler (uncredited)
Ed Agresti ... Second Trial Judge (uncredited)
Alex Akimoff ... O.G.P.U. Man (uncredited)
Fred Aldrich ... Man at Bar in Montage (uncredited)
Demetrius Alexis ... O.G.P.U. Man (uncredited)
Elizabeth Archer ... Elderly Woman (uncredited)
Louis V. Arco ... Train Announcer (uncredited)
Sam Ash ... American Senator (uncredited)
Herbert Ashley ... Electrician at Madison Square Garden (uncredited)
Hooper Atchley ... Father (uncredited)
Robert Baikoff ... Soldier (uncredited)
Felix Basch ... Dr. Hjalmar Schacht - Banker (uncredited)
Nino Bellini ... Italian Reporter (uncredited)
Ted Billings ... Man at Inn (uncredited)
Tina Blagoi ... Russian Woman (uncredited)

Oliver Blake ... Heckler (uncredited)
Monte Blue ... Heckler (uncredited)
Eugene Borden ... M. Delbeau - French Minister (uncredited)
Egon Brecher ... Heinrich Sahm (uncredited)
Barbara Brown ... Well-Wisher at Train (uncredited)
Morgan Brown ... American Delegate (uncredited)
Alexander Campbell ... Senator (uncredited)
George M. Carleton ... Congressman (uncredited)
James Carlisle ... American Senator (uncredited)
Maurice Cass ... Yugoslavian President (uncredited)
Nikolai Celikhovsky ... Soviet Official (uncredited)
Feodor Chaliapin Jr. ... Shop Foreman (uncredited)
Luke Chan ... Japanese Diplomat (uncredited)

Cyd Charisse ... Galina Ulanova - Ballerina (uncredited)
Jack Chefe ... Newspaperman in Courtroom (uncredited)
Alex Chivra ... Pierre Laval (uncredited)
Peter Chong ... Japanese Ambassador Shigemitsu (uncredited)
Virginia Christine ... Maria - Beautician (uncredited)

Winston Churchill ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Wallis Clark ... Well-wisher with Bill (uncredited)
Donald Clayton ... Vincent Massey (uncredited)
Edmund Cobb ... Heckler (uncredited)
James Conaty ... Dinner Guest (uncredited)
Harry Cording ... Blacksmith (uncredited)

Gino Corrado ... Italian (uncredited)
Jerome Cowan ... Spendler (uncredited)
Noel Cravat ... Workman (uncredited)
Joseph Crehan ... Reporter (uncredited)
Oliver Cross ... Delegate Van deWater (uncredited)
Albert D'Arno ... Frenchman (uncredited)
Jacqueline Dalya ... Russian Girl (uncredited)
William B. Davidson ... Senator (uncredited)
George Davis ... French Reporter (uncredited)
Jean De Briac ... French Maniac (uncredited)
Leander De Cordova ... Heckler (uncredited)
Wally Dean ... Isolaltionist (uncredited)
Igor Dega ... Litvinov's Secretary (uncredited)
Jean Del Val ... Molotov's Secretary (uncredited)
Lala Detolly ... Russian Woman (uncredited)
John Dilson ... American Senator (uncredited)
Warren Douglas ... Emlen's Well-Wisher at Train Station (uncredited)
Eugene Eberle ... Son (uncredited)
Oliver Eckhardt ... Radio Listener (uncredited)
Anthony Eden ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Ben Erway ... Heckler (uncredited)
Fred Essler ... Dutch Banker (uncredited)
Herbert Evans ... Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Adolph Faylauer ... German Diplomat at Train Station (uncredited)

Frank Faylen ... Reporter (uncredited)
Frank Ferguson ... American Newsman (uncredited)
Robert Fischer ... von Schulenberg (uncredited)
James Flavin ... American Senator (uncredited)
Ray Flynn ... Isolationist (uncredited)
Lee Tung Foo ... Tsiang Ting Fu - Chinese Ambassador (uncredited)
Ross Ford ... Johnny - Emlen's Well-Wisher at Train Station (uncredited)
William Forrest ... American Newsman (uncredited)
Patrica Fung ... Chinese Girl (uncredited)
Jack Gardner ... Newsreel Photographer (uncredited)
Gene Gary ... Russian Foreman (uncredited)
Art Gilmore ... Commentator (uncredited)
Joseph W. Girard ... American Senator (uncredited)
George Glebeff ... O.G.P.U. Man (uncredited)
Sam Goldenberg ... Mr. Leon Trotsky (uncredited)
Ernest Golm ... Fat German (uncredited)
Lisa Golm ... Train Passenger Arriving Late (uncredited)
Gregory Golubeff ... Commandant of the Court (uncredited)
Christine Gordon ... Parachutist (uncredited)
William Gould ... Isolationist (uncredited)
Alexander Granach ... Russian Air Force Officer (uncredited)
Jesse Graves ... White House Butler (uncredited)
Henry Guttman ... O.G.P.U. Man in Taxi (uncredited)
Hermann Göring ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Bobby Hale ... Man at Inn (uncredited)
John Hamilton ... Charlie - American Newsman (uncredited)
Lumsden Hare ... Lord Chilston (uncredited)
Sam Harris ... Parade Spectator (uncredited)
Henry Hebert ... Isolaltionist (uncredited)
Frank Hemphill ... Grandfather (uncredited)
Yvonne Hendricks ... Minister's Wife (uncredited)
Louis Jean Heydt ... American Newsman (uncredited)
Herbert Heyes ... Congressman (uncredited)

Adolf Hitler ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
David Hoffman ... Mr. Radek (uncredited)
Bert Howard ... Senator (uncredited)
Mauritz Hugo ... Heckler (uncredited)
Arthur Stuart Hull ... Dinner Guest (uncredited)
Olaf Hytten ... Parliament Member (uncredited)
Frieda Inescort ... Madame Molotov (uncredited)
Ted Jacques ... Machinist (uncredited)
Frank Jaquet ... Dutch Banker (uncredited)
Allen Jung ... Japanese Diplomat (uncredited)
Erwin Kalser ... German Businessman (uncredited)
Joseph Kamaryt ... Old Russian (uncredited)
Eddie Kane ... Heckler (uncredited)
Zoia Karabanova ... Russian Train Engineer (uncredited)
Kurt Katch ... Gen. Semen Timoshenko (uncredited)
Edward Keane ... Isolationist (uncredited)
Kenner G. Kemp ... Newspaperman (uncredited)
Bill Kennedy ... American Newsman (uncredited)
Jack Kenney ... Heckler (uncredited)
Colin Kenny ... Parade Soldier Spectator (uncredited)
Emmett King ... British Delegate (uncredited)
Manart Kippen ... Joseph Stalin (uncredited)
Nicholas Kobliansky ... O.G.P.U. Man (uncredited)
Al Kunde ... Father (uncredited)
Adia Kuznetzoff ... O.G.P.U. Man (uncredited)
Charles La Torre ... Rosso - Italian Ambassador (uncredited)

Charles Lane ... Man in Kitchenin Montage (uncredited)
Ivan Lebedeff ... Mr. Rosengoltz (uncredited)
Charles Legneur ... Dancer at Ball (uncredited)
Gabriel Lenoff ... O.G.P.U. Man (uncredited)
George Lessey ... Bill - Well-wisher (uncredited)
Marion Lessing ... Telephone Operator (uncredited)
Carl M. Leviness ... Reporter (uncredited)
Adolf E. Licho ... Bookseller (uncredited)
Rolf Lindau ... German Reporter (uncredited)
Doris Lloyd ... Mrs. Churchill (uncredited)
Kathleen Lockhart ... Lady Chilston (uncredited)
Arthur Loft ... Man with Microphone (uncredited)
Wilbur Mack ... American Newsman (uncredited)
Rosa Margot ... Russian Servant (uncredited)
Michael Mark ... Timid Man (uncredited)
Janet Martin ... Natasha (uncredited)
John Maxwell ... Reporter at Train (uncredited)

Mike Mazurki ... Russian Machinist Workman (uncredited)

Frank McClure ... League of Nations Official / Ball Guest (uncredited)
Lafe McKee ... Radio Listener (uncredited)
Alex Melesh ... Mr. Pyatakov (uncredited)
Marie Melish ... Young Woman (uncredited)
Tina Menard ... Telephone Operator (uncredited)
Peter Michael ... German Reporter (uncredited)
Harold Miller ... Dancer at Ball / Congressman (uncredited)
Howard M. Mitchell ... Heckler (uncredited)
Vyacheslav Molotov ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Clive Morgan ... Anthony Eden (uncredited)
Forbes Murray ... Isolationist (uncredited)
Martin Noble ... Russian Officer (uncredited)
Barry Norton ... Ball Guest (uncredited)
Field Norton ... Congressman (uncredited)
Alex Novinsky ... Courtroom Reporter (uncredited)
Pat O'Malley ... Irish-American in Montage (uncredited)
Daniel Ocko ... Mr. Yagoda (former OGPU Head) (uncredited)
Michael Panaieff ... Ulanova's Dancing Partner (uncredited)
Paul Panzer ... Court Attendant (uncredited)
Emory Parnell ... Uncaring Businessman (uncredited)
Manuel París ... Russian Military Policeman (uncredited)
Irene Pedrini ... Telephone Operator (uncredited)
Frank Penny ... Heckler (uncredited)
Francis Pierlot ... Doctor (uncredited)
René Plaissetty ... Coulendre (uncredited)
Frank Puglia ... Trial Judge Ulrich (uncredited)
Louis Quince ... Member of Parliament (uncredited)
Emil Rameau ... Ignacy Paderewski (uncredited)

Frank Reicher ... General von Koestrich - German ambassador (uncredited)
Duncan Renaldo ... Italian Reporter (uncredited)
Georges Renavent ... President Paul van Zeeland (uncredited)
Vera Richkova ... Parachutist (uncredited)
Betty Roadman ... Mother (uncredited)
Constantine Romanoff ... Accused Member of O.G.P.U. (uncredited)
Nico Romoff ... Foreman (uncredited)
Lionel Royce ... Herr Schmidt (uncredited)

Richard Ryen ... German Major (uncredited)
Loulette Sablon ... Telephone Operator (uncredited)
Tanya Samova ... Flower Girl (uncredited)
Sam Savitsky ... Spadebeard (uncredited)
Ferdinand Schumann-Heink ... German Reporter (uncredited)
Hans Schumm ... Train Gate Guard (uncredited)
Irina Semochenko ... Parachutist (uncredited)
Konstantin Shayne ... Mr. Nikolai Bukharin (uncredited)
Robert Shayne ... Engineer (uncredited)
Tamara Shayne ... Russian Nurse (uncredited)
Evelynne Smith ... Daughter (uncredited)
Leonid Snegoff ... Kommodov (uncredited)
George Sorel ... German Bund Member (uncredited)
Joseph Stalin ... Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
Rudolf Steinboeck ... German (uncredited)
Glenn Strange ... Southerner in Montage (uncredited)
Mark Strong ... Englishman (uncredited)
Sándor Szabó ... Ski Troop Lieutenant (uncredited)
Ben Taggart ... Guest at Davies' Speech (uncredited)
Mike Tellegen ... O.G.P.U. Man (uncredited)
Zina Torchina ... Parachutist (uncredited)
Ivan Triesault ... Mr. Tukhachevsky (former general) (uncredited)
Charles Trowbridge ... Secretary of State Cordell Hull (uncredited)
Tom Tully ... American Engineer in Russia (uncredited)
Olga Uljanovskaja ... Russian Nurse (uncredited)
Edward Van Sloan ... German Diplomat in Berlin (uncredited)
Henry Victor ... Herr Schufeldt - Hamburg Official (uncredited)
Michael Visaroff ... Barkov (uncredited)
Ray Walker ... Raymond - Davies' Butler (uncredited)
Glen Walters ... Mother (uncredited)
Pierre Watkin ... Naval Attache (uncredited)
Peggy Watts ... Telephone Operator (uncredited)
Frank Wayne ... Heckler (uncredited)

John Wengraf ... Polish Ambassador Grzybowski (uncredited)
Mischa Westfall ... Petya (uncredited)
Leigh Whipper ... Haile Selassie (uncredited)
Marek Windheim ... Mr. Sokolnikov (uncredited)
Joan Winfield ... Telephone Operator (uncredited)
Isabel Withers ... Well-Wisher at Train (uncredited)
Jean Wong ... Parachutist (uncredited)
Victor Wong ... Japanese Diplomat (uncredited)
Jack Young ... President Roosevelt (uncredited)
Alfred Zeisler ... German Train Conductor (uncredited)
Esther Zeitlin ... Russian Woman (uncredited)

Directed by
Michael Curtiz 
 
Writing credits
Joseph E. Davies (book)

Howard Koch (screenplay)

Produced by
Robert Buckner .... producer
Jack L. Warner .... executive producer
 
Original Music by
Max Steiner 
 
Cinematography by
Bert Glennon 
 
Film Editing by
Owen Marks 
 
Art Direction by
Carl Jules Weyl 
 
Set Decoration by
George James Hopkins 
 
Costume Design by
Orry-Kelly (gowns)
 
Makeup Department
Gordon Bau .... makeup artist
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Frank Heath .... assistant director (uncredited)
Don Siegel .... second unit director (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Oliver S. Garretson .... sound
 
Special Effects by
Roy Davidson .... special effects
Hans F. Koenekamp .... special effects (as H.F. Koenekamp)
 
Editorial Department
James Leicester .... montage
Don Siegel .... montage
 
Music Department
Leo F. Forbstein .... musical director
Bernhard Kaun .... orchestral arrangements (as Bernard Kaun)
Hugo Friedhofer .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Jay Leyda .... technical advisor
LeRoy Prinz .... ballet stager (as Leroy Prinz)
Don King .... unit publicist (uncredited)
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
123 min (Turner library print) | 124 min (copyright length)
Country:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Certification:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
According to the book "The Films of World War II" by Joe Morella, Edward Z. Epstein and John Griggs, this film "was extremely controversial in the United States, where it was attacked on the one hand as a whitewash of the Soviet regime and defended on the other as a fitting tribute to a gallant ally", while "in Russia some of Hollywood's conceptions of Russian life presented in 'Mission to Moscow' evoked laughter."See more »
Goofs:
Factual errors: Aside from the issue of the fairness of the Moscow purge trials, or the truthfulness of the alleged confessions of the accused, the people shown standing trial together in the film in fact did not all stand trial at the same time. There were two such major show trials, one in 1937, the second in 1938, and the real life characters depicted in the film as being tried simultaneously were actually tried in separate groups at one of the two trials.See more »
Quotes:
Maxim Litvinov, Foreign Minister:[to Davies] There is no security for any of us unless there's security for all.See more »
Movie Connections:
Soundtrack:
For YouSee more »

FAQ

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17 out of 32 people found the following review useful.
The first casualty of war is truth, 18 February 2006
Author: Mark-Rhoads2 from Washington, DC

Both the book, "Mission to Moscow" by the late Ambassador Joseph M. Davies, and this film, are severe attacks on intellectual honesty. Near the conclusion, the narrator speaks over a scene with the flags of members of the United Nations starting with the flags of the United States, Britain, the Soviet Union, and "all the world's free nations."

Wow. To imply that the U.S.S.R. under Marshal Joseph Stalin was anywhere close to "a free nation" is as breathtakingly dishonest as any author or screen writer can be.

Now it is true that many Americans did not like Russia under Stalin and it is true that FDR wanted to justify American aid for the Russian Army because it was fighting on a second front to defeat Nazi Germany. It is also true that the Russian people suffered terribly, more than any other nation, from Hitler's attacks. The loss of Russian life, both military and civilian, on the eastern front was massive beyond comprehension. As bad as Londoners suffered during the blitz, Russian people suffered much greater loss of life.

But none of that justifies the incredible pro-Soviet lies in this film. Lies such as one where Ambassador Joe Davies, played by Walter Huston, justifies the Russian invasion of Finland by saying it was self defense. Lies such as Davies saying that it was British delays that would drive Stalin "into Hitler's arms." There was plenty of duplicity in both Moscow and Berlin over the shared occupation of Poland when the Molotov-Von Ribbentrop Pact (mutual non-aggression treaty) was signed by Germany and the U.S.S.R. in 1939.

There are repeated references in the film by Huston as the narrator, by a "voice" of President Roosevelt, and by others to "pro-fascist" propaganda as being responsible for anti-Russian feelings in the U.S. Without any help from Hitler, many Americans in the late 1930s saw the Stalin state for what it was, a repressive monstrosity. A humorous but dark view of the U.S.S.R. was on display in "Ninotchka" in 1939 starring Greta Garbo and Melvyn Douglas directed by the great Ernst Lubitsch. A similar 1940 film was "Comrade X" starring Clark Gable and Hedy Lamarr directed by King Vidor. Those stereo-typical views, also mild distortions, still came far closer to the truth about the Stalin government than this 1943 film did.

There is a side issue in some user comments about the screen writer Howard Koch and whether or not he was fairly treated as a "black listed" writer in the 1950s when he and his wife wrote under different names in England. Whatever the merits or demerits of that separate debate may be, the writing in this film is not only laboriously pro-Soviet, direct from the party line, but it is also stilted. Almost every monologue by Walter Huston as Davies is a speech that constantly recovers familiar Communist Party talking points of that era.

It is rumored that FDR wanted this film to be made based on the book in an effort to drum up public support in America for the allied effort. This might be true. But by the time the film came out in 1943, American public opinion had already made its peace with the idea of a temporary tactical alliance with Russia for the limited purpose of defeating Hitler. That is why this film's blatant pro-Soviet drum beating is so puzzling even in the context of World War II and in 1943.

Americans understood that, as Churchill put it, if Hitler invaded Hell we would say nice things about the devil. Perhaps a hundred years from now, the crimes of Joseph Stalin will be as famous as those of Hitler. But in 1943, it was in the interest of the grand alliance that American films downplay Soviet crimes and praise the bravery of Soviet troops. The latter effort was honest, the former was not.

Even so, this film went way too far. One can legitimately admire the Russian people themselves and their army for a valiant struggle against the Wehrmacht without fawning over a cowardly, drunk, and militarily-stupid Stalin. The film even fawns over the always lovable Vyacheslav Molotov (of Molotov Cocktail fame) so improbably played by Gene Lockhart (of Bob Cratchett and the judge in Miracle on 34th Street fame).

There is the key difference. Davies was not just pro-Russian in the context of a necessary war time alliance. Davies used the war as his excuse to become an all out an apologist for the repressive Communist dictatorship of the U.S.S.R. and rationalized everything that government did no matter what. Whether he was a dupe or just a gullible fellow traveler is beside the point. It is the extreme extent of the ideological rationalizations that makes this film so dishonest.

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