7.5/10
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Watch on the Rhine (1943)

Approved | | Drama | 27 August 1943 (USA)
A German-born engineer, his American wife and their children travel from Mexico to the United States to visit his brother but their plans are complicated by a Romanian count.

Directors:

, (uncredited)

Writers:

(screen play), (additional scenes and dialogue) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Lucile Watson ...
...
...
...
...
Phili Von Ramme
...
Bodo
Donald Buka ...
Joshua
...
Italian Man
Helmut Dantine ...
Young Man
Clyde Fillmore ...
Sam Chandler
Erwin Kalser ...
Dr. Klauber
Kurt Katch ...
Herr Blecher
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Storyline

A German-born engineer, his American wife and their children travel from Mexico to the United States to visit his brother but their plans are complicated by a Romanian count.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

On her lonesome lips a smile.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

27 August 1943 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Die Wacht am Rhein  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

"The Screen Guild Theater" broadcast a 30 minute radio adaptation of the movie on January 10, 1944 with Bette Davis and Paul Lukas reprising their film roles. See more »

Goofs

At 1:43:02, Kurt's hands on Babbie's arm changes position. See more »

Quotes

Kurt Muller: [in response to an Italian man on the train asking what he does] I fight against fascism. That is my trade.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Saints and Soldiers: Airborne Creed (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

America, My Country 'Tis of Thee
(1832) (uncredited)
Music attributed to Henry Carey ("God Save the King!") (1744)
Played often in the score
See more »

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User Reviews

 
NOT PREACHY?!!!?
9 December 2000 | by (Pittsburgh, PA) – See all my reviews

It as absolutely incredible to me that anyone could make the comment that this film is not preachy. It is not only oppressively preachy, but absurd, stagebound, dramatically straight-jacketed, and painfully overwrought. Watching it, one feels like an 8 year old child being punished by having to write "I will not become a fascist" on the blackboard 100 times.

Now I understand that it was made during the height of WW2, and was intended to be a brave condemnation of Hitler and the terrible suffering he brought about, (which anyone would whole-heartedly applaud) and I'm sure it accurately captured the mood of the day. But it is presented in such an immature, over-obvious, sledgehammer way, it fails abysmally as a work of art.

The only good performances here are from Paul Lukas, who brings sincerity and intensity to his role as a quietly heroic anti-fascist; and Lucile Watson as the amusingly ill-mannered rich grandmother who slowly comes to realize how dangerous the world has become. Though their rootless upbringing has subjected them to all kinds of hardships, the children are ridiculously shown as robotically well-behaved little snips. They do not even remotely resemble real human beings. And Bette Davis, a great actress, here is so one dimensionally noble I cringed every time she was on screen. Her every word, her every gesture is meant to convey how SUPPORTIVE and UNDERSTANDING she is of the SACRIFICES her husband has to make and the great CAUSE he is fighting for, that she must've been wired to receive a painful electric shock if she dared allowed any hint of doubt or shading to surface in her portrayal.

So yes, this is a very IMPORTANT film, just not a very good one.


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