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That Forsyte Woman (1949)

Passed  -  Drama | Romance  -  3 November 1949 (USA)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 783 users  
Reviews: 32 user | 6 critic

Love among the Forsytes is strange, full of tradition, melancholy and gold digging in this film treatise on Victorian-age rigidity and vestiges of a flawed society.

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(based on book I of "The Forsyte Saga" by), (screen play), 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Aubrey Mather ...
Gerald Oliver Smith ...
Lumsden Hare ...
Stanley Logan ...
Halliwell Hobbes ...
Matt Moore ...
Florence Auer ...
Phyllis Morris ...
Marjorie Eaton ...
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Storyline

Soames and Irene Forsyte have a marriage of convenience. Young Jolyon Forsyte is a black sheep who ran away with the maid after his wife's death. Teenager June Forsyte has found love with an artist, Phillip Bosinny. The interactions between the Forsytes and the people and society around them is the truss for this love story set in the rigid and strict times of the Victorian age. Written by erasmus

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

To men she could be ice . . . or fire . . . or everything!

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 November 1949 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cumbres de soberbia  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was based on the first of Galsworthy's Forsythe novels, "The Man of Property." See more »

Goofs

In an era of corset-wearing ladies there is a scene where Irene confronts Soames in his office about going on vacation. Garson is dressed in a Victorian nightgown and robe but in various scenes of her seated her bra straps are visible. See more »

Quotes

Soames Forsyte: [In a disparaging way as Young Jolyon is leaving] I understand you're teaching now at some sort of second-rate art school... or something.
Young Jolyon Forsyte: [Replying as he is leaving] The art school is first rate. I'm second rate.
See more »


Soundtracks

The Lancer's Quadrilles: La Dorset
Composed by Spagnoletti
[the first dance at June's ball]
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User Reviews

 
A Gorgeously Produced Classic; Nearly a Great Drama
4 August 2005 | by See all my reviews

John Galsworthy's sometimes ponderous but very interesting social drama "The Forsyte Saga" has been attempted as a TV-mini series since this production of a feature film, based on the earlier books of the series, was issued by MGM Studios' heads. The film they produced turned out to be an absolutely-gorgeous color offering, by anyone's standards, featuring costumes by Walter Plunkett and Valles, cinematography by talented Joseph Ruttenberg, and art direction by Daniel B. Cathcart and Cedric Gibbons. The interesting original music for the film was composed by Bronislau Kaper, and Edwin B. Willis produced lovely set decorations. The script for the piece was furnished by Jan Lustig, Ivan Tors and James B. Williams, drawing the events largely from "The Man of Property" by John Galsworthy. In the cast were lovely red- haired Greer Garson as Irene Forsyte, and Errol Flynn as Soames Forsyte, the eponymous new-money tycoon of the "The Man of property"s" original title. Walter Pigeon played young Jolyon Forsyte, whom the family has disowned for following an artistic career, among other complaints. Robert Young was architect Philip Bossinney and respected British actors played the delightfully and frighteningly stuffy Forsyte family including Halliwell Hobbes, Lumsden Hare, Aubrey Mather and more. Janet Leigh played young June Forsyte and Harry Davenport the elder Jolyon Forsyte. With all this talent, the film which is quite good could perhaps have been made even better. Compton Bennett's direction is angular, always interesting and more-than-competent at all points by my standards. The story-line, for those who have never seen it, involves a loveless marriage between Soames Forsyte, who regards his wife as an article of property and Irene, a 19th-century woman who has to marry, being without profession, who grows to despise his miserly nouveau riche pretensions, controlling behavior, and bullyings. She takes up with an excitingly-imaginative architect, who has been hired by Soames to build their new home. Finding out about their attachment, Soames uses his financial power against Bossinney, who grows distraught and then is killed in a street accident. Irene turns to the black-sheep of the family, who had married for love, the artist Jolyon, leaving Soames to confront the colossal failure of his pretensions. The classically-trained Garson and Pigeon are wonderful and memorable in their parts. Flynn tries hard, but lacks a bit of the vocal power he developed soon after this film as released; nevertheless he is more-than-adequate and intelligent in his role. The entire supporting cast ranges from very good to even better by my standards; but their parts seldom allow them to stand out for very long in this look at an entire social class. As a writer, I must suggest that the only loss of power in this strong film appears to stem from MGM's studio heads asking for a script that stressed Soames's emotional coldness; the strongest line of development appeared to have been to stress the tyranny aspect of Soames as versus the regard for individual dignity and rights-- regardless of the wealth owned by any man--on the part of Irene and Jolyon and the other ethical sorts in the work. The film has quite a bit to say about the misuses of power, I suggest; it depicts the imperial side of Britain and the postmodernist unethicals it spawned, folk who never noticed that they were acquisitive types who seemed to admire piracy more than honesty. "That Forsyte Woman" I find to be a very absorbing, beautiful and sobering cinematic production.


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