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Hail the Conquering Hero (1944)

Passed  -  Comedy | War  -  9 August 1944 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 2,866 users  
Reviews: 35 user | 25 critic

Having been discharged from the Marines for a hayfever condition before ever seeing action, Woodrow Lafayette Pershing Truesmith (Eddie Bracken) delays the return to his hometown, feeling ... See full summary »

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Title: Hail the Conquering Hero (1944)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins. See more awards »

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Documentary short depicting the dangers of inadvertent dispersal of secret military information, showing the unintended and disastrous results of careless conversation and improper maintenance of secret records.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Raymond Walburn ...
Mayor Noble
...
...
Reception Committee Chairman
Elizabeth Patterson ...
Martha - Libby's Aunt
Georgia Caine ...
Mrs. Truesmith
Al Bridge ...
Political Boss
Freddie Steele ...
Bugsy
Bill Edwards ...
Forrest Noble
Harry Hayden ...
Doc Bissell
Jimmy Conlin ...
Judge Dennis
Jimmie Dundee ...
Cpl. Candida
Edit

Storyline

Having been discharged from the Marines for a hayfever condition before ever seeing action, Woodrow Lafayette Pershing Truesmith (Eddie Bracken) delays the return to his hometown, feeling that he is a failure. While in a moment of melancholy, he meets up with a group of Marines who befriend him and encourage him to return home to his mother by fabricating a story that he was wounded in battle with honorable discharge. They make him wear a uniform complete with medals and is pushed by his new friends into accepting a Hero's welcome when he gets home where he is to be immortalized by a statue that he doesn't want, has songs written about his heroic battle stories, and ends up unwillingly running for mayor. Despite his best efforts to explain the truth, no one will listen. Written by J. Adam Ingle

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

MIRACLES DO HAPPEN! (original print ad - all caps)

Genres:

Comedy | War

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 August 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Herói de Mentira  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

As the marines are leaving the Oakridge station, a billboard behind them is advertising The Miracle of Morgan's Creek (1944), another film by Preston Sturges. See more »

Goofs

William Demarest's character is call "Sarge" by one of his Marine Corps mates, Marines never refer to their sergeants as "Sarge". See more »

Quotes

Mrs. Truesmith: Why can't you wear your uniform for a little while?
Libby's Aunt: You look so nice in it.
Woodrow Lafayette Pershing Truesmith: I just got through explaining it's against regulations.
Mrs. Truesmith: Well, I think that's perfectly ridiculous.
Libby: So do I.
Mrs. Truesmith: Your grandfather wore his Civil War uniform the rest of his life.
Libby's Aunt: Kept having new ones made.
Mrs. Truesmith: Said it helped remind people that brother fought brother.
Woodrow Lafayette Pershing Truesmith: [looking at Sgt. Heppelfinger] Well his case was different!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mary Tyler Moore: Hail the Conquering Gordy (1977) See more »

Soundtracks

U.S. Marine Corps Hymn
(1859) (uncredited)
(also called "The Marines' Hymn")
Music by Jacques Offenbach from "Genevieve de Brabant" (1868)
Lyrics attributed to L.Z. Phillips (1919)
Played at the railroad station
Also Sung by the mob
See more »

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User Reviews

 
WIN WITH WOODROW
10 June 1999 | by (NEW JERSEY, USA) – See all my reviews

A tip of the hat to the other commentors of this film. Their comments are enlightened and do justice to a real work of art. Here is my small contribution.

Eddie Bracken does a wonderful job as the meek, pitiful "hero", who just wants to go home. (The word that comes to mind is sanctuary. More than a place, it's a goal and ultimate need.) Home, back to his town, his mother, and his girl.

William Demarest, as the sergeant, shines. He gives a laudable performance. Or is it just him? His "bark" in this film is very reminiscent of another famous role of his, that of the "salty" Uncle Charley on the long running TV sitcom, "My 3 Sons".

The town is a delight. It is a typical small town of 50 years ago (or what we expect one to be). It's a warm friendly place with people you can count on. In typical small town American tradition, the truth is triumphant, everyone pulls together, and a tearful, happy ending is assured. I'm sure that if you close your eyes you'll be able to picture this place in your mind's eye.

A sentimental, funny, patriotic movie that would be very much appreciated during the dark days of war, it's charm still comes through 50 plus years later. It's one of my favorites.....


19 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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