7.4/10
5,673
51 user 33 critic

The Bells of St. Mary's (1945)

Unrated | | Drama | 21 February 1946 (Sweden)
At a big city Catholic school, Father O'Malley and Sister Benedict indulge in friendly rivalry, and succeed in extending the school through the gift of a building.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (story)
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Going My Way (1944)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Youthful Father Chuck O'Malley led a colorful life of sports, song, and romance before joining the Roman Catholic clergy, but his level gaze and twinkling eyes make it clear that he knows ... See full summary »

Director: Leo McCarey
Stars: Bing Crosby, Barry Fitzgerald, Frank McHugh
Joan of Arc (1948)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In the Fifteenth Century, France is a defeated and ruined nation after the One Hundred Years War against England. The fourteen years old farm girl Joan of Arc claims to hear voices from ... See full summary »

Director: Victor Fleming
Stars: Ingrid Bergman, José Ferrer, Francis L. Sullivan
Anastasia (1956)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An opportunistic Russian businessman tries to pass a mysterious impostor as the Grand Duchess Anastasia. But she is so convincing in her performance that even the biggest skeptics believe her.

Director: Anatole Litvak
Stars: Ingrid Bergman, Yul Brynner, Helen Hayes
Holiday Inn (1942)
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

At an inn which is only open on holidays, a crooner and a hoofer vie for the affections of a beautiful up-and-coming performer.

Director: Mark Sandrich
Stars: Bing Crosby, Fred Astaire, Marjorie Reynolds
Gaslight (1944)
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Years after her aunt was murdered in her home, a young woman moves back into the house with her new husband. However, he has a secret that he will do anything to protect, even if it means driving his wife insane.

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Charles Boyer, Ingrid Bergman, Joseph Cotten
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An angel in human form enters the life of a bishop in order to help him build a new cathedral and repair his fractured marriage.

Director: Henry Koster
Stars: Cary Grant, Loretta Young, David Niven
Boys Town (1938)
Certificate: Passed Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Against all odds Father Flanagan starts "Boys' Town" after hearing a convict's story. Whitey Marsh comes there. He runs away but, hungry, returns. He runs away again but, when friend Pee ... See full summary »

Director: Norman Taurog
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Mickey Rooney, Henry Hull
Biography | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

All her life Englishwoman Gladys Aylward knew that China was the place where she belonged. Not qualified to be sent there as a missionary, Gladys works as a domestic to earn the money to ... See full summary »

Director: Mark Robson
Stars: Ingrid Bergman, Robert Donat, Curd Jürgens
Drama | Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

An opportunistic Texas gambler and the exiled Creole daughter of an aristocratic family join forces to achieve justice from the society that has ostracized them.

Director: Sam Wood
Stars: Gary Cooper, Ingrid Bergman, Flora Robson
Adventure | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

During the Spanish Civil War, an American allied with the Republicans finds romance during a desperate mission to blow up a strategically important bridge.

Director: Sam Wood
Stars: Gary Cooper, Ingrid Bergman, Akim Tamiroff
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Two nuns from a French convent arrive in a small New England town with a plan to build a children's hospital. They enlist the help of several colorful characters in achieving their dream ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Koster
Stars: Loretta Young, Celeste Holm, Hugh Marlowe
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
...
Sister Michael
...
...
Mary Gallagher - Patsy's mother
...
Dr. McKay
Richard Tyler ...
Eddie Breen (as Dickie Tyler)
...
Edit

Storyline

Father O'Malley, the unconventional priest from 'Going My Way', continues his work for the Catholic Church. This time he is sent to St. Mary's, a run-down parochial school on the verge of condemnation. He and Sister Benedict work together in an attempt to save the school, though their differing methods often lead to good-natured disagreements. Written by Greg Helton <ghelton@airmail.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Whole World's in Tune . . . with Bing and Bergman together at their most brilliant best ! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 February 1946 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

Leo McCarey's The Bells of St. Mary's  »

Box Office

Gross:

$21,300,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene in which Father O'Malley (Bing Crosby) is singing with the nuns, he asks if they know "Birmingham Bertha". That song was co-written by Grant Clarke, who also co-wrote "The Land of Beginning Again", which is sung in this film by Crosby. See more »

Goofs

Fr. O'Malley tells two nuns he grew up and went to school in Missouri. In "Going My Way" it was established he went to high school in East St. Louis, IL. See more »

Quotes

Father Chuck O'Malley: There's another sense, you know, Sister.
Sister Mary Benedict: Oh, don't tell me.
Father Chuck O'Malley: Yes, sense enough to know when to leave.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Adjust Your Tracking (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Happy Birthday to You
(uncredited)
Written by Patty S. Hill and Mildred J. Hill
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Dial "O" for O'Malley.
19 July 2004 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Leo McCarey and Bing Crosby had such a mega-hit on their hands with Going My Way that a sequel in this case really was inevitable. If The Bells of St.Mary's does not quite hit the heights of Going My Way it's got nothing to apologize for. One thing that I do like about it is that you don't have to have watched Going My Way to get into the spirit of this.

Bing repeated his Father O'Malley character and in doing so got a second Oscar nomination. Until Al Pacino was nominated for Michael Corleone in both Godfathers One and Two, Crosby was the only performer ever to have been nominated twice for the same role. Because of Father O'Malley, Bing Crosby became probably the most well known Catholic lay person on the planet. And for better or worse it's the Crosby that is remembered when the knives came out for him after he died.

With Ingrid Bergman the damage was more immediate. Today if you asked the average movie goer to quickly name the part Bergman is best known for it would be Ilsa Lund from Casablanca. Back in the late 40s however the answer would be Sister Benedict. How a Swede who is identified as Swedish in the film could be a Catholic, let alone a nun is a mystery to me. But that's how good an actress Ingrid Bergman was. She became the personification of holiness so when Ingrid Bergman announced she was pregnant with Roberto Rosellini's child the reaction of the public was swift and terrible. Banish her from Hollywood and she was. Such is the power of the mass media. Consider folks like Errol Flynn and Robert Mitchum who had reputations as hell-raisers before scandal hit them. Such is the power of the silver screen and the images it creates.

Bing has some good songs here, he sings the title tune with different lyrics for the screen then for his record. It's the school anthem and he sings it with a chorus of nuns to back him. Those nuns do sing well and in key. I wonder if it was the inspiration for Sister Act.

Crosby also has two of his patented philosophical numbers, Aren't You Glad You're You and In The Land Of Beginning Again. And in keeping with the nature of the film, he sings Adeste Fideles and O Sanctissima.

Among the supporting cast I would single out Joan Carroll as the girl boarding with the convent housekeeper and Martha Sleeper as her mother. Sleeper had both looks and talent, she should have had a bigger career.

The Bells of St. Mary's is what we would deem fine family entertainment. It's also how the Catholic Church likes to see itself. It's a milestone movie for the careers of its stars. But what a cost.


20 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?