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Our Vines Have Tender Grapes (1945)

Passed  -  Drama | Family  -  September 1945 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 1,030 users  
Reviews: 33 user | 8 critic

A Norwegian farmer lovingly raises his daughter in rural World War II-era Benson Junction, Wisconsin.



(screen play), (book)
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Title: Our Vines Have Tender Grapes (1945)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
James Craig ...
Nels Halverson
Frances Gifford ...
Viola Johnson
Morris Carnovsky ...
Bjorn Bjornson
Jackie 'Butch' Jenkins ...
Arnold Hanson
Sara Haden ...
Mrs. Bjornson
Greta Granstedt ...
Mrs. Faraassen
Dorothy Morris ...
Ingeborg Jensen
Arthur Space ...
Pete Hanson
Elizabeth Russell ...
Kola Hanson
Louis Jean Heydt ...
Mr. Faraassen
Kurt Jensen
Francis Pierlot ...


Life in small town Wisconsin. Selma and Arnold, aged 7 and 5, pal around together between their two farms. Selma has a newborn calf that her father gave to her which she named 'Elizabeth'. Nels is the editor of the Fuller Junction Spectator and the kids just call him 'editor'. Viola is the new school teacher from the big city. While Nels wants to marry Viola, Viola does not want to live in a small quiet, nothing happening town. The biggest news is that Faraassen has built a new barn. Written by Tony Fontana <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Family


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

September 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Our Vines Have Tender Grapes  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on September 2, 1946 with Margaret O'Brien, James Craig and Frances Gifford reprising their film roles. See more »


In the opening scene, during the two-shot of Selma Jacobson and Arnold Hanson, he can be seen mouthing her lines as she says them. See more »


Martinius Jacobson: [Entering Bjornson's new barn] You can still smell the new wood... finest smell on the earth.
See more »


Spoofed in Gorilla My Dreams (1948) See more »


Joy to the World
(1719) (uncredited)
Music attributed to George Frideric Handel
Hymn by Isaac Watts (1719)
Arranged by Lowell Mason
Sung by all in Church
See more »

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User Reviews

like Debussey's music
5 July 2004 | by (Toledo, OH) – See all my reviews

Of course you don't know me, but if you believe that I am the furthest thing from a sentimental person, you should trust me when I say this film (the title of which I cannot even bring myself to reproduce it's such a HORRIBLE title, one of the worst ever) blew me away. This film is like Debussey's music, it flows along and has a spontaneous quality to it, as if it weren't planned at all. The LACK of conflict for at least the first hour is a BOLD move esthetically. It took real guts to make this film, and real skill too. Those who would criticize its lack of "realism," its failure to acknowledge the DARK SIDE know not what they do. We NEED movies which acknowledge the fact that life can be good, that childhood can be fun, that the effortless insights of children make us laugh. I am still laughing at Arnold, who in one scene in the barn bombards Martinius and Selma with "why" after "why" after "why." "Why can't I go to school?" asks Arnold. "Because you're too young," answers Selma. "Why am I too young?" he asks. "Just because you are." "But why?" he asks again. "Because." Maybe it's just me, but that is one hilarious exchange of dialogue, one of many in the film. Margaret O'brien is BRILLIANT in these scenes, astonishingly natural in front of the camera.

Sure there are attempts to get deep about the war, and there are other "literary" moments of forced deepness, but overall this is one RARE piece of film ART, and an unjustly ignored CLASSIC.

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