5 user 2 critic

The Master Race (1944)

Approved | | Drama, War | 22 September 1944 (USA)
When allied troops liberate a small battle-scarred Belgium town in 1944 the American and British commanders do all they can to help the war-weary people back on their feet. There are mental... See full summary »


(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Anne Froelick) | 2 more credits »

On Disc

at Amazon

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Mexican workers at a Zinc mine call a general strike. It is only through the solidarity of the workers, and importantly the indomitable resolve of their wives, mothers and daughters, that they eventually triumph.

Director: Herbert J. Biberman
Stars: Juan Chacón, Rosaura Revueltas, Will Geer
Slaves (1969)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

A Kentucky slave fights for his freedom from cruel overseer whose mistress eventually joins Davis and the other slaves in their revolt.

Director: Herbert J. Biberman
Stars: Dionne Warwick, Ossie Davis, Stephen Boyd
Poupoupidou (2011)
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A bestselling crime novelist who is desperately looking for a new story hones his focus on the apparent suicide of a small-town woman, an aspiring model who thought she was the reincarnation of Marilyn Monroe.

Director: Gérald Hustache-Mathieu
Stars: Jean-Paul Rouve, Sophie Quinton, Guillaume Gouix
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Instructed to set out on a journey by his village chief, Flying Fox heads south to learn about his strengths as a man. During his journey he meets two warring villages and attempts to ... See full summary »

Director: Alex Bernstein
Stars: Soane Prescott, Kelepi Fonohema, Sione Ma'u
Fighter I (2007)
Action | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Aicha, a high-school student, is a passionate kung fu fighter. Her Turkish parents expect her to get good grades so she can get into medical school, like her brother Ali. But school doesn't... See full summary »

Director: Natasha Arthy
Stars: Semra Turan, Nima Nabipour, Cyron Melville
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Renowned psychiatrist Pavel Josek is singled out to receive a "Memory of the Nation" medal, however, it transpires that this reputedly morally irreproachable dissident once collaborated ... See full summary »

Director: Jan Hrebejk
Stars: Lenka Vlasáková, Milan Mikulcík, Martin Huba
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Director: Herbert J. Biberman
Stars: Edward Arnold, Lionel Stander, Dennie Moore
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

This lurid exposé of the Hitler Youth follows the woes of an American girl declared legally German by the Nazi government.

Directors: Edward Dmytryk, Irving Reis
Stars: Tim Holt, Bonita Granville, Kent Smith
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A young doctor kills himself after a medical committee terminates his research into human embryos, considering it too inhumane. His wife then seeks revenge on those who drove her husband to... See full summary »

Director: Jesús Franco
Stars: Soledad Miranda, Fred Williams, Paul Muller
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A mild-mannered school-teacher in a Nazi-occupied town during W.W.II finds himself being torn between collaboration and resistance.

Director: Jean Renoir
Stars: Charles Laughton, Maureen O'Hara, George Sanders
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Director: Herbert J. Biberman
Stars: Lloyd Nolan, Peggy Conklin, Walter Connolly
Demons from Her Past (TV Movie 2007)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  

A woman returns to her hometown after 25 years, to attend her Grandmother's funeral and to prove that others were responsible for a crime that she was convicted of when she was 18 and spent 3-years in prison.

Director: Douglas Jackson
Stars: Alexandra Paul, Michael Woods, Cynthia Gibb


Complete credited cast:
Morris Carnovsky ...
Old Man Bartoc
Helen Beverly ...
Mrs. Varin
Gavin Muir ...
William Forsythe
Sergeant O'Farrell (as Richard Nugent)
Schmidt (as Louis Donath)
Baby (as Ghislaine Perreau)


When allied troops liberate a small battle-scarred Belgium town in 1944 the American and British commanders do all they can to help the war-weary people back on their feet. There are mental and physical wounds to heal, fields to plough, the church to rebuild. But a top Nazi, knowing the War is lost, has infiltrated the town and is fostering dissent and disunity. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The dramatic shock of the century!


Drama | War






Release Date:

22 September 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Raça Superior  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Was hastily put into production, adapted from an unproduced outline, following the D-Day Landings. See more »


The British officer Captain William Forsythe gives a palm down American style salute. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

THE MASTER RACE (Herbert J. Biberman, 1944) ***
25 June 2008 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

Director Biberman is remembered today, if at all, for being one of The Hollywood Ten – film people who defied the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) and ended up in prison: consequently, his career numbered very few films – two ‘B’ thrillers made previous to this and two more (albeit higher-profile) titles after it; I myself had watched the best-regarded of the lot, SALT OF THE EARTH (1954), some time ago.

The two films clearly state where his political sympathies lie – given their celebration of collectivism during periods of turmoil (in the case of THE MASTER RACE, it obviously deals with WWII and, specifically, the ferreting of Nazi criminals and local collaborationists in Belgium once the Allies turn up to liberate the country). Unsurprisingly, all of this gives way to a lot of speechifying – though the war elements render the whole more palatable than was the case with SALT OF THE EARTH (which concerned a prolonged strike at a New Mexico mine-field); the narrative, in fact, throws in everything but the kitchen sink (with plenty of twists and turns along the way) – and, while the characters may come across as stereotypes at times, solidly professional production values (the film was made by RKO at its prime) carry it through.

The cast is modest yet effective – principally George Coulouris in one of his best roles as the Nazi Colonel (the film starts off with him disbanding his chain of command when it becomes clear that the Germans were losing the war) who passes himself off as the patriotic brother of a traitor who has been executed (in this respect, it’s the Hollywood equivalent of Britain’s WENT THE DAY WELL? [1942]). The latter’s surviving wife and daughter are having a hard time coping with this fact, being themselves under a cloud of suspicion – and the German is thus able to observe both sides with relative ease (since he obviously now professes to denounce Nazism, while at the same time rousing gullible locals into resisting the Allies’ help by making them out to be just another group of tyrants!). The more prominent among the ranks of the latter are Stanley Ridges as the American Major in command of the country’s reconstruction and Carl Esmond as a rugged but cheerful Russian officer with medical experience.

One other important female character is that played by Osa Massen, a local girl who succumbed to the advances of a German officer – a relationship which has even produced a child – while her fiancé and brother (Lloyd Bridges, himself in love with the niece of the man Coulouris has replaced!) went to war. There’s much conflict and heartache at the core of such sensitive issues – but understanding, forgiveness and hope for the future eventually prevail. Incidentally, we also get a repentant Nazi (now being held in the same concentration camp where the Belgians had been incarcerated not long before) and it is he who brings about Coulouris’ downfall; the latter had already committed murder and also ordered the destruction of the prison, ostensibly as an act of retribution against the Nazis but really to blame the locals for it – thus causing discord between them and the Allies! The film remains interesting today for its uncompromising and intimate look at the ravages of war, made with relatively few concessions to Hollywood conventions – displaying instead courage, conviction and a passion rarely felt in this type of genre offering.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Discuss The Master Race (1944) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: