7.1/10
1,167
30 user 2 critic

The White Cliffs of Dover (1944)

Passed | | Drama, Romance, War | June 1944 (USA)
London based American nurse, Susan, Lady Ashwood, is at the hospital awaiting the imminent arrival of injured soldiers. She is hoping that her enlisted son, Sir John Ashwood, who resembles ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(poem), (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Sam Bennett
...
Colonel Walter Forsythe
...
Nanny (as Dame May Whitty)
...
Lady Jean Ashwood
...
...
Reggie Ashwood
...
Rosamund
Brenda Forbes ...
Gwennie
...
Mrs. Bland
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Storyline

London based American nurse, Susan, Lady Ashwood, is at the hospital awaiting the imminent arrival of injured soldiers. She is hoping that her enlisted son, Sir John Ashwood, who resembles his father both in appearance and temperament, is not among those injured. As she waits, she remembers back to WWI when her husband, the previous Sir John Ashwood, was enlisted, and the waiting she endured on any news from and about him while he was away in battle. From a humble background, Sue almost didn't meet Sir John let alone marry him as she and her father, Hiram Dunn, the publisher of a small daily newspaper, were only in London in April 1914 on a two week vacation - her first ever trip - that was not going very well when by happenstance she got invited on her last day in London to the king's ball, where Sir John was awaiting the arrival of another young woman with who he was supposed to keep company for the evening. Despite being mutually attracted to each other, the patriotic Sue didn't ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The greatest love story of our time! It will live forever in your heart! MGM's greatest triumph!

Genres:

Drama | Romance | War

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

June 1944 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Evocación  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ronald Colman owned the rights to Alice Duer Miller's poem, but sold them to Clarence Brown, who in turn sold them and his services as director to M-G-M. See more »

Quotes

Susan Dunn's landlady: [while on a train leaving England for America] Johnny, don't you want to go to America?
John Ashwood II as a Boy: Oh yes, mother. If you do.
Susan Dunn's landlady: No, no. Tell me the truth. What are you thinking of sitting there so serious? I wouldn't for the world force you to do something you thought was wrong. But I do wish you could see it my way, darling. I want it so much.
John Ashwood II as a Boy: Why, mother?
Susan Dunn's landlady: Because I'm afraid. I'm afraid of what's ahead. I'm afraid of another war. Your father died when he was young. He died for England, Johnny. But you're ...
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Déjà Vu (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

When Johnny Comes Marching Home
(1863) (uncredited)
Written by Louis Lambert
(Pseudonym for Patrick Sarsfield Gilmore)
Played by a marching band of British and American troops during World War II
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Romance in Great Britain with a Message
9 February 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I have a dissenting voice about White Cliffs of Dover. Most reviewers seem to love it. I thought the movie began well, but descended into sappiness before it (mercifully) ended. When did it lose its way? Probably around the 2/3 mark. The plot line of a high-spirited Yankee being swept off her feet by a member of the "landed gentry" caught my interest. One knew from the date of their meeting that WWI was looming over their romance. And knowing that the movie was produced during WWII, I could almost write the rest of the plot. The problem with the film, for me, was in the execution. The last third of it became self-consciously sentimental and dreary, the weepiness intermingled with the over-the-top attempt to stir the fires of patriotism in viewers. The sounds of a military band and the sight of our soldiers marching on a heroic mission always thrill me, personally. My son is in the military. And WWII is the epitome of heroic times. But I did not appreciate the way the movie clumsily tried to manipulate my thoughts and feelings. What I did love about the film were the superb character actors--Frank Morgan at his best, Dame May Witty, Gladys Cooper, C. Aubrey Smith, and the young Roddy McDowall. It was fun seeing other familiar faces--Van Johnson, Elizabeth Taylor, Tom Drake. Again, I have to differ with viewers who loved Irene Dunne in this part. Her portrayal just didn't work for me. I could see Greer Garson as better suited for the role. I felt the others--Morgan, Smith, Witty, Alan Marshal who played her husband, and even McDowall--carried Dunne along and gave her believability. Two aspects of the movie I especially applaud. First, the significance of Dieppe in the lives of the main characters brought an emotional weight and synchronicity to the film that has stayed with me. And Nanny's final scene helped me to understand the whole situation through her sad, old eyes. I will remember that touching moment when all the marching bands have passed.


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