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In Our Time (1944)

 -  Drama  -  19 February 1944 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 298 users  
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It is early 1939 in Poland when Mrs. Bromley and Jennifer come to buy antiques for her business in London. Jennifer meets Count Stephen and they wine, dine and see the sights though out the... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Count Stefan Orwid
Nancy Coleman ...
Janina Orwid
...
Mrs. Bromley
Victor Francen ...
Count Pawel Orwid
...
Zofia Orwid (as Nazimova)
Michael Chekhov ...
Uncle Leopold Baruta
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Storyline

It is early 1939 in Poland when Mrs. Bromley and Jennifer come to buy antiques for her business in London. Jennifer meets Count Stephen and they wine, dine and see the sights though out the city. He wishes to marry, but his family is against plain Jennifer. When she tries to leave, he catches her at the train station and they are married. To be self sufficient, they modernize the family farm with tractors and increase production, but then Germany starts the war. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

antique | train | tractor | poland | farm | See All (27) »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 February 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ask milyona bedel  »

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

Count Stefan takes Jennifer on a walking tour of Warsaw. As they walk, stock footage is shown of various important monuments culminating in the bronze monument of Chopin by sculptor Waclaw Szymanowski. These monuments were all systematically destroyed by the Germans in 1940. See more »

Crazy Credits

After the WB logo appears at the end, the letters W and B are separated and letters added to form the words "BUY War Bonds". See more »

Soundtracks

Prelude in A major, Op.28, No.7
(1836-9) (uncredited)
Written by Frédéric Chopin
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Pre-WWII Poland: Its "feet in this century, its head in the last"
4 August 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a strange little movie, though not without historical interest. This is Poland before it's desecration by German forces; a "feudal" society, it's population predominately rural, a cultural anachronism laboring under enslavement to tradition.

Such is the backdrop for this formulaic love story between an English working girl, Jennifer Whittredge, played by Ida Lupino and Polish Count Stefan Orwid, portrayed by Paul Henreid. The two meet in the country's capital city Warsaw where Jennifer's employer has come to shop for antiques. Count Stefan treats Jennifer to an evening of fine dining in a restaurant named "The Stables…" a name that clues us in to the forthcoming chain of anachronisms that preoccupy the entire story. And we don't have long to wait. The next clue follows pretty quickly on the first.

Count Stefan Orwid is a officer in the Polish cavalry who expresses confidence that the army of his country can repel German aggression. Over the dinner table he expresses to Jennifer his conviction that "when it rains, enemy tanks would get bogged down in the mud…our cavalry would ride around them." When Jennifer asks him, quite reasonably, what would happen should it not be raining when the two sides confront each other in battle…well…the Count is stumped. He has no reply. Apparently such an obvious contingency has never occurred to him. What would happen when horses were pitted against the machines of modern warfare? Holy kielbasa!

Well, the Count and English girl Jennifer get married, and her aristocratic in laws, especially her mother-in-law, literally faints in prostration at this unwelcome match. "You came from too far, you are too different," Zofia Orwid swoons.

Michael Chekov, as Uncle Leopold, provides the only noteworthy performance here. He's the cranky old sage of the noble clan, tolerated by his family circle as an eccentric busybody. However, he's the only one within miles who seems to have a grasp on reality, faulting the lifestyle and values of his compatriots for living in a "lost world, a world of dinosaurs."

Under his wife's influence, the Count attempts to modernize the farm work, for the good of the peasant laborers as well as for profit and independence from the overbearing and overseeing control of the family patriarch, Uncle Pawel. His efforts to mechanize field work by introducing a tractor is initially received with stony indifference by the assembled peasants. After one of them is induced to take it for a wild ride over the cropland, the consensus is a thumbs down for the tractor, now a mechanical monster to be feared. Again, the scriptwriters have illustrated their message.

Conclusion: The Hollywood movie factory gave us too little, too late. Five years after the invasion of Poland by Nazi forces, the movie machine decided to put out a propaganda vehicle to arouse awareness and promote solidarity with European plight. They gave us their two cents worth in this anemic film.


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