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The Happy Years (1950)

Passed | | Comedy, Romance, Sport | 7 July 1950 (USA)
Based on a collection of stories with the focus on young John Humperkink "Dink" Stover, a student at the Lawrenceville Prepatory School, in 1896, whose family, in Eastcester, New York, have... See full summary »



(stories), (screenplay)
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Complete credited cast:
'Tough' McCarty
Samuel H. Stover - Sr.
Maude Stover
The Old Roman
Donn Gift ...
Big Man' / 'Hungry Smead
Peter M. Thompson ...
Samuel 'Sambo' H. Stover Jr. (as Peter Thompson)
Jerry Mickelsen ...
'Cheyenne' Baxter
Mason Alan Dinehart ...
Coffee Colored Angel (as Alan Dinehart III)
David Bair ...
White Mountain Canary
Danny Mummert ...
'Butsey' White
Eddie LeRoy ...
'Polar' Beckstein
Claudia Barrett ...
Miss Dolly Travers


Based on a collection of stories with the focus on young John Humperkink "Dink" Stover, a student at the Lawrenceville Prepatory School, in 1896, whose family, in Eastcester, New York, have just about given up on his education because he is an incorrigible student. He gets into one situation after another and incurs the dislike of his classmates, who think he is cowardly but he changes their opinion when he challenges several of them to a fight. When he returns home for the summer, he meets Miss Dolly Travers and increases his 'hatred of women' because she does not accept his schoolboy pranks. Back at school, in the fall, he is more difficult than ever until his philosophy is changed by a teacher. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Romance | Sport


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

7 July 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Adventures of Young Dink Stover  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


A nostalgic boyhood saga, filmed in Technicolor by MGM, with a distinguished director, William A. Wellman, this picture failed to net a contemporary New York Times review. See more »


Obvious stunt double for Dean Stockwell in the football tryout scene. See more »


The Old Roman: I have in the course of my experience as a teacher had to deal with imbeciles, had to deal with near idiots, but for sheer monumental asininity I have never met the equal of this aggregation.
See more »


Referenced in The Lawrenceville Stories (1986) See more »

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User Reviews

Great Overlooked Family Movie
20 December 2007 | by (Houston) – See all my reviews

This is one of my favorite movies. Dean Stockwell is great as the main character. This is not your run of the mill story about sweet little boys at some boy school. They all are characters, The main character (Humperdink)Dink is a feisty kid who doesn't take any mess from anyone. He is not annoying or disrespectful. He just feels very strongly about certain things and will let you know. He is a little guy among older boys, But they soon find out he is not a pushover. The supporting characters are great.

And I love the message the schoolmaster had. Dinks grades are not the best, and he almost gets expelled. But the school master, played by Leo G Carroll says that even though he may not have good grades his character offers so much more then that and people could learn from people like him too. I adhere to that. I have seen so many A students with nothing to offer but a good grades. I feel grades are important, but they should not count for every thing and at times should not be the most important factor to judge if one is a success. This movies picked up on that Dink was a leader who had roadblocks but he tackled them and that was what was the most important.

There is a subplot about him playing football which is also very good. His classmates fall in love with him eventually, like you will.

I think this was a part that could of been easily played two different ways. One is the smart azz, disrespectful way that we see so many child stars act today, The parts where the kids are smarter then the adults and go around the whole movie calling adults by their first name. The movie would of failed if it went in that direction. Or the way Dean Stockwell played it. This part has to work for the movie to work.

I just got to see this movie by mistake for the second time in my life this morning on TCM. I didn't even know its name until today. But I never forgot the movie and was elated to see it on the TV when I woke up this morning. I am just mad I did not DVR it because it is not on video. Something I found out when went to buy it online. Check this movie out if you can catch it on TV.

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