A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1945)

PG  |   |  Drama  |  2 August 1945 (Australia)
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 5,232 users  
Reviews: 66 user | 23 critic

Encouraged by her idealistic if luckless father, a bright and imaginative young woman comes of age in a Brooklyn tenement during the early 1900s.



(screen play), (screen play), 2 more credits »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Complete credited cast:
James Dunn ...
Ted Donaldson ...
Ruth Nelson ...
Miss McDonough
John Alexander ...
Steve Edwards
B.S. Pully ...
Christmas Tree Vendor


In Brooklyn circa 1900, the Nolans manage to enjoy life on pennies despite great poverty and Papa's alcoholism. We come to know these people well through big and little troubles: Aunt Sissy's scandalous succession of "husbands"; the removal of the one tree visible from their tenement; and young Francie's desire to transfer to a better school...if irresponsible Papa can get his act together. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis



Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild depiction of mature plot material | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

2 August 1945 (Australia)  »

Also Known As:

Ein Baum wächst in Brooklyn  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The Betty Smith novel was the object of pre-publication bidding competition among several studios, with Darryl F. Zanuck and 20th Century-Fox ultimately paying $55,000 for the rights. See more »


[first lines]
Katie Nolan: This'll be the last of them now, Francie.
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Referenced in Backstory: Gentleman's Agreement (2001) See more »


Away in a Manger
(1885) (uncredited)
Music from "St. Kilda" by J.E. Clark
Lyrics writer unknown
Performed by a chorus
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Brooklyn -- the way it was
3 September 2001 | by (Leonia, NJ) – See all my reviews

What a magnificent motion picture! Dorothy McGuire and Peggy Ann Garner give the greatest mother-daughter performances of all time. Betty Smith's book is a classic, and this film somehow manages to do it perfect justice in the first movie ever directed by Elia Kazan.

In many ways I feel privileged to be able to comment here because I may be the only "reviewer" in these pages to have been in Brooklyn very close to the time of this film (I was born in 1909). The film recaptures the feel, the mores, the neighborhood so magnificently, it is incredible. Every time I watch this movie, I feel as if I am revisiting my youth, albeit an idealized version.

Everyone who watches this movie should share it with the next generation of moviegoers. It truly is timeless.

46 of 48 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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