7.4/10
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116 user 61 critic

Gentleman's Agreement (1947)

Approved | | Drama, Romance | February 1948 (USA)
A reporter pretends to be Jewish in order to cover a story on anti-Semitism, and personally discovers the true depths of bigotry and hatred.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screen play)
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Won 3 Oscars. Another 8 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Jane
...
Tommy Green
Nicholas Joy ...
Dr. Craigie
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Professor Fred Lieberman
Harold Vermilyea ...
Lou Jordan
Ransom M. Sherman ...
Bill Payson
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Storyline

Philip Green is a highly respected writer who is recruited by a national magazine to write a series of articles on anti-Semitism in America. He's not too keen on the series, mostly because he's not sure how to tackle the subject. Then it dawns on him: if he was to pretend to all and sundry that he was Jewish, he could then experience the degree of racism and prejudice that exists and write his story from that perspective. It takes little time for him to experience bigotry. His anger at the way he is treated also affects his relationship with Kathy Lacy, his publisher's niece and the person who suggested the series in the first place. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

February 1948 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Laura Z. Hobson's Gentleman's Agreement  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Darryl F. Zanuck felt the time was right to bring up the subject of anti-Semitism, following the full disclosure of what had actually gone on in the Nazi death camps. See more »

Goofs

When Phil is taking Tommy to meet his (Phil's) mother at Saks Fifth Avenue, they stop in front of the statue of Atlas outside Rockefeller Center. In the shot of the two of them talking, with Fifth Avenue in the background, Saks is directly behind them, diagonally across the street on the right, with St. Patrick's Cathedral on the left. But when Phil looks at his watch and tells Tommy they'd better leave to meet grandma, the two hurry off back north along Fifth Avenue - in the completely opposite direction of the plainly visible Saks. See more »

Quotes

Phil Green: I'm going to let everybody know I'm Jewish.
Kathy Lacey: Jewish? But you're not! Are you? Not that it would make any difference to me. But you said, "Let everybody know," as if you hadn't before and would now. So I just wondered. Not that it would make any difference to me. Phil, you're annoyed.
Phil Green: No, I'm just thinking.
Kathy Lacey: Well, don't look serious about it. Surely you must know where I stand.
Phil Green: Oh, I do.
Kathy Lacey: You just caught me off-guard.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in American Masters: None Without Sin (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Good portrayal of indiscriminate prejudice that leaves lifetime damage
2 June 2006 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Gregory Peck is slick as a writer for a publisher who is trying to find something to inspire him after his wife dies. He must take care of his young son and has his mother there in New York to help him out. Anti-Semitism hits a chord as WWII has just ended with news of the Holocaust just barely starting to sink into the national consciousness. The timing for release of this movie is obvious, but it is carefully thought out as the director tries to convey the sinister and insidious way in which prejudice worms its way into the mainstream of everyday life. A well done film that works! A clever and intelligent portrayal that deserved the attention it received. Not an entertaining movie in the strictest sense, but one where the audience must do the work of thinking their way through it. It is a film worth navigating, however, because the ugly mirror of prejudice is held up to us all who are watching. It makes you feel uncomfortable because most of us are guilty of what is offered, or at least, of witnessing prejudice and doing nothing about it as we just sit or stand idly by and do nothing.

I recommend this film, but it won't be for everyone and many of us would rather just pass this one by. But we should not pass it by, even though it holds up this mirror which makes us feel guilty and uncomfortable. I should point out that the ending which relates to the love interest in the story just doesn't work, but then that is not the heart, soul and purpose of the film. Prejudice, anti-Semitism and discrimination are, and these elements are worked out well. A disturbing, but intelligent portrayal which is worth taking in for what it is worth.


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