7.9/10
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62 user 16 critic

The Search (1948)

Passed | | Drama, War | 26 March 1948 (USA)
In post-war Berlin, an American private helps a lost Czech boy find his mother.

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Writers:

(screen play), (collaborator: on screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Jarmila Novotna ...
Mary Patton ...
Ewart G. Morrison ...
William Rogers ...
Ivan Jandl ...
Leopold Borkowski ...
Claude Gambier ...
Raoul Dubois
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Storyline

A silent nine-year-old Czech boy, a survivor of Auschwitz, flees a refugee center in postwar Germany and is found by an American G.I. At the same time, the boy's mother, the sole surviving member of his family, searches refugee centers for her son. Time, distance, and the massive numbers of refugee children are factors hampering the reunion of mother and son. Written by Martin H. Booda <booda@datasync.com>

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Everybody agrees MGM's The Search is a wonderful motion picture !

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

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Language:

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Release Date:

26 March 1948 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Det dagas  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$250,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Clint Eastwood has singled out Montgomery Clift's performance in this film as one of the biggest influences on him as an actor. See more »

Goofs

When Mrs. Malik leaves the UNRRA center, she's wearing a single-breasted, belted trench coat. In the next scene, she's getting off a train and is wearing a double-breasted, belt-less trench coat.When she's back at the UNRRA camp,she's wearing yet another trench coat-this one is single-breasted and belt-less. See more »

Quotes

Jerry Fisher: [holds up picture of sexily-posed woman] What'd he tell you for that?
Karel Malik: The tomato!
Jerry Fisher: [to Steve, who's standing nearby] Ohhhh, brother! You'd better stick to building bridges!
See more »

Connections

References Bambi (1942) See more »

Soundtracks

Hineh Ma Tov
(uncredited)
Lyrics from Psalm 133
Sung by the Jewish children to the tune of "Battle Hymn of the Republic" music by William Steffe (ca 1856)
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User Reviews

 
The Littlest Victims of War and Totalitarianism
17 October 2005 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

This film marked the feature film screen debut of Montgomery Clift. It was not meant to be that way. Red River was made first, but held up in release due to a threatened lawsuit. So The Search ended up being the movie going public's first glimpse of Montgomery Clift.

They didn't get to see him until the film was only just about half way finished. The only character who is continuously on screen through out the film is little Ivan Jandl. What a performance too. The worst thing that could have happened to this film is to have some name Hollywood kid actor play that role. Young Ivan comes across as a real kid who went through horrors unimaginable in first world countries today.

Ivan is Czech and his family are singled out by the Nazis and put in Auschwitz. Father and sister are killed, mother and son are separated. The film is their search for each other.

Ivan after V-E Day is in another kind of camp, a refugee camp run by the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Agency. He's almost comatose from the shock of four years of horror. To him the men in uniforms are still to be feared even though it's not Nazi uniforms. He makes a break for it and GI Montgomery Clift picks him up and takes him back to his dwelling.

Ivan and Monty kind of grow on each other, but at the same time Ivan's mother played by Czech opera star Jarmila Novotna is pursuing her quest for her little boy. She comes to the UNRRA camp which is headed by Aline McMahon. This may very well be her best screen moment. McMahon also narrates large chunks of the film, describing the enormous task the UNRRA had in reuniting families all over Europe in addition to a whole lot of other things like food, clothing, and shelter.

Clift and Ivan have great chemistry. And no one ever portrayed sensitivity better than Montgomery Clift on the screen. You know how much empathizes with Ivan's plight with every look, every nuance, every gesture. Fred Zinneman got a great performance out of him and later on Zinneman directed Clift in his greatest film role in From Here to Eternity.

The film was shot in postwar Germany and the landscape itself and the looks of the people tell what they've been through. I wouldn't be surprised but that Clift's performance in The Search later on led him to being cast in The Big Lift, another film set in post World War II Germany.

Probably it was just as well Clift got his first exposure in this film. It guaranteed him co-star status with John Wayne when Red River finally did come out.

The Search 56 years later is a moving movie experience.


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